Former Knicks point guard Ray Williams dies of cancer
By Kurt Helin
Sad news coming out of New York — Ray Williams, a point guard born in New York who went on to play for the Knicks among others during a 10-year NBA career, has passed away from cancer. He was 58.
Williams was the No. 10 pick in the 1977 draft out of Minnesota and he played his first four seasons in New York (much of it next to Michael Ray Richardson). Williams was a good defender who averaged 15.5 points a game for his career. In addition to New York he had stints with the Nets, (then Kansas City) Kings, Celtics, Hawks and Spurs.
However, after his playing days things fell apart for the man known as “Sugar Ray” and he ended up homeless and living out of his car. It was a sad story.
Knicks coach Mike Woodson spoke about Williams to the New York Post.
“He was awesome,” Woodson told The Post recently. “Physical. Tough. Knew how to play. He was a prototype combo guard because he can play 1, he could play 2 and could guard the 3 because he was so physical. To see him in the hospital like that you don’t wish that on anyone. That’s why we should be fortunate we can walk around and laugh.”
So sad... :(
He and Micheal Ray Richardson were in the unfortunate position of having to replace Clyde and Earl the Pearl for the Knicks title teams. Impossible expectations for both guys, and falling short took a toll on both of them.
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