And you thought I forgot about it, huh? November 18 is a national holiday in my household. Back in the day, it meant playing The Diplomats “Who I Am” on repeat, spinning a ball on my fingertips while reading Tom Friend’s ESPN features on the man who tattooed WHIT EBOY on his fingers.
The retired Jason Williams turned 38 years old today, and if an era wasn’t already dying, it’s officially gone now. Being retired assures us of that.
I’ve written at length about #55 many times before, almost too many times. So that was out of the question. There’s nothing else that hasn’t already been written. What better way to celebrate his birthday than by celebrating his genius with highlight tapes?
Here are the top 10 YouTube mixes from Williams:
10. Jason Williams & La Roux
This song can make anything seem epic and world-changing. Williams’ once-in-a-generation combination of handles and confidence didn’t need much help in that regard, but if you grew up watching this cat play, then there’s no way this video won’t give you goosebumps. The video loses points for failing to showcase some of his rarer gems, instead keeping it simple with highlights that you’ve definitely seen before.
9. Jason Williams In College
In truth, J-Will really only got drafted on the strength of one game: an eight-point upset win in Kentucky where Florida’s PG dropped 24 points and made a mockery of the Wildcats’ vaunted press. Williams played just 20 games at Florida, averaging 17.1 points and 6.7 assists before being suspended and thrown off the team for failing a third drug test. By the time he finally got to the league, he was virtually an unknown to many basketball fans. (Remember, things were a lot different back in the day without YouTube.). There’s a chance you’ve never seen some of these highlights.