Former UofA star Derrick Williams hopeful for NBA season

This wasn’t exactly how former Arizona All-American envisioned spending a Saturday night in late November.

Instead of suiting up for the Minnesota Timberwolves, the second overall pick in June’s NBA draft was in street clothes on the sideline watching UofA upset in-state rival ASU Saturday night in Tempe.

D-Will said he still believes we will see pro basketball at some point this season.

“I’m optimistic,” Williams told’s Jared Cohen. “I think there will be a season. I think they’ll get it done sooner or later.”

Williams said goodbye to Tucson after the Pac-10 Player of the Year led the ‘Cats to the Elite Eight as a sophomore. He averaged 19.5 points and eight rebounds, while hitting 60% from the field and an even more impressive 51% from behind the arc.

He said the layoff has been tough, but he’s attempting to stay busy until a final decision is made regarding the season.

“I’m just working out, trying to stay in shape,” he explained to “Trying to do different things.”

The down time has also allowed him the opportunity to keep a close eye on Sean Miller’s team. The young ‘Cats are considered a front-runner to win the Pac-12.

“They have a lot of shooters,” said Williams. “They’re really going to hurt people shooting three’s. They have started a little slow. Hopefully they’ll get it together.”