Minnesota Gophers standout Ray Williams Dies
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Off the court, however, longtime Gophers fans are mourning the loss of Ray Williams, who died at age 58 on March 22, 2013 after losing his battle with colon cancer. Williams played for the Gophers from 19751977 and averaged 18.9 points, 6.6 rebounds and 5.7 assists during his career. Williams was a 63 guard who was silky smooth and versatile, a player who former Gopher and NBA coach Flip Saunders, a college teammate of Williams, said was "pound for pound the best player to play" for the Gophers at that time, in an article in the Pioneer Press. Williams was a key part of a Gophers team that also Ugg Australia Outlet included Kevin McHale and Mychael Thompson. The team was coached by Jim Dutcher in an era many consider the Golden era of Golden Gophers basketball.
A tribute to Former New York Knicks and Minnesota Gophers standout Ray WilliamsA tribute to Former New York Knicks and Minnesota Gophers standout Ray Williams
Williams went on to play in the NBA, spending the majority of his career with the New York Knicks, who drafted him 10th overall in the 1977 NBA Draft. Williams averaged 16.4 points in 10 seasons with the Knicks, New Jersey Nets, Boston Celtics, cheap uggs for sale Atlanta Hawks and San Antonio Spurs.
Williams was a beloved player by fans and teammates during his collegiate and professional career. Kevin McHale told a story of how Williams stood up for McHale the first time the Hibbing, Minnesota native traveled with Williams to New York to play basketball.
Although Williams ran into some personal problems after his playing days, including declaring for bankruptcy in 1994 and becoming homeless in 2010, the memories of Williams on the court are what teammates, coaches and fans are remembering today. When he was homeless, many of his former Celtics teammates came to his aid, helping him recover financially and leading him to a job with the parks and recreation department in his hometown of Mount Vernon, New York.