The Phoenix Suns signed Troy Williams on Saturday. Yes, they really did. However, it didn’t last long at all before being waived immediately afterwards.
There’s a reason Phoenix used this method with Williams, though.
As part of their transactions yesterday, the Phoenix Suns signed and waived Troy Williams. This was done to get Williams' Affiliate Player rights for the Northern Arizona Suns of the NBAGL. Williams was with the Sacramento Kings on a Two-Way contract last season.— Keith Smith (@KeithSmithNBA) October 20, 2019
Williams has bounced around the league during his short tenure in the league — four teams in four seasons (Grizzlies, Rockets, Knicks, Kings) — but he definitely would fill a need in case of emergency for the wing rotation. Last season, Williams was on a two-way contract in Sacramento and averaged 5.3 points in 21 games when he saw actual playing time.
Many Suns fans might be asking why the organization pulled off this maneuver with Williams, so here’s an easy explanation via the affiliate player rule. For example, with the Suns now waiving Williams alongside David Kramer, Norense Odiase, and Tariq Owens, they now have fulfilled their maximum requirement for this rule.
The Suns’ G League affiliate has first dibs on Williams, Kramer, Odiase, and Owens to sign them to contracts. With Phoenix still leaving one two-way slot still open, this is very notable. All four could end up playing in Northern Arizona this season, if they want to.
Now, we’ll wait to see what happens next with Williams. Will he join Jared Harper as the Suns’ second two-way contract? Honestly, it makes sense. Williams is a versatile wing who can check scorers defensively while also being an efficient slasher when called upon.
Williams, the former Indiana Hoosier who went undrafted, has flashed often in Las Vegas Summer League. During the 2017 and 2018 summer showcase, Williams showed intriguing potential as a 3-and-D wing.