Just how impressive was Lou Williams’ 2017-18 season?

by Brantley Watson

LOS ANGELES — Clippers guard Lou Williams wasn’t just good this season. He was dominant.

In his 13th season, many thought the career sixth man was playing so well that he would earn his first-ever All-Star nod, so much so that when Williams was not selected for the game, it was regarded as the most evident annual All-Star snub.

Still, Williams nearly led an injury-riddled Clippers squad to its seventh consecutive playoff berth. So, just how impressive was Williams’ 2017-18 season?

Here are the stats from Sweet Lou’s memorable 13th NBA campaign:

  • In his 13th NBA season, Williams averaged career-highs in points (22.6), assists (5.3) and minutes (32.8), and became the first player to ever lead his team in points and assists while starting less than a third of his team’s games.
  • Williams scored a career-high 1,782 total points this season, the tenth most in the NBA. Of the top 15 players in total points scored, Williams is the only one who was not named an NBA All-Star.
  • This season, Williams tallied career-highs in total assists (417), field goals made (582) and attempted (1,337), free throws made (432) and attempted (491), three pointers made (186) and attempted (518), and minutes played (2,589).
  • Williams became the first player in NBA history to average 20+ points for the first time in their 13th season or later. He became the second player in NBA history (Chauncey Billups) to average a career-high in scoring in their 13th season or later.
  • Williams tallied 597 fourth quarter points this season and averaged 7.9 points per fourth quarter, both tops in the league. He was one of only two players to score 500 or more in the fourth quarter this season, the other being Cleveland’s LeBron James.
  • Williams finished fifth in the league in second half points with 1,016. He was one of only five players to score over 1,000 points in the second half this season, along with Cleveland’s LeBron James, Portland’s Damian Lillard, Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook, and Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo.
  • Williams led the NBA with 38 games scoring 20+ points off the bench, the most in single-season by any active player.
  • Williams has scored 30 or more points 31 times in his career, 17 of which occurred this season.
  • Williams registered 11 games of 30+ points off the bench this season, the most among all active players in a single season. It was the second most in a single season since 1984-85.
  • Williams led the NBA in bench scoring this season (21.9), which is the most in a single season since 1989-90.
  • Williams became the first player on record (bench stats were first recorded in 1970-71) to average 20+ points and 5+ assists as a reserve (20+ games).
  • Williams connected on 186 threes this season, the fourth most in Clippers franchise history.
  • On Jan. 10 at Golden State, Williams scored a career-high 50 points on a career-high 16 field goals and 8 three-pointers. It was the most points scored by a Clipper since Charles Smith (52) on Dec. 1, 1990. He also became the fourth player to score 50+ in team history (Smith, Bob McAdoo & Freeman Williams).
  • On Jan. 20 at Utah, Williams totaled 31 points, 7 assists, and a career-high and franchise record 10 steals, becoming the only player since 1973-74 with 30+ points, 10+ steals & 7+ assists in a single game.
  • On Jan. 26 at Memphis, Williams became third player since 1970-71 to tally 40+ points & 10+ assists off the bench (Pete Maravich, 11/28/73 & Brian Winters, 1/22/82).
  • Williams played in 79 games this season and scored 10+ points 77 times. Between Nov. 22 and April 11, he scored at least 10 points in each game (61 straight games).