Chicago Bulls forward Patrick Williams is gearing up for his junior season in the NBA, and he's doing it with a vengeance. During the team's media day, Williams details how he went through "hell" in summer workouts with All-Star teammate Demar DeRozan, which started promptly at 5 a.m. every day in Los Angeles.
The devil's in the details
When Williams and DeRozan decided to work out together during the offseason, the Florida State product anticipated a hellish time. Little did he know that it would be as challenging as it was. The two players worked out for hours on end, with intense drills aimed at taking their games to the next level.
"The workout starts at 5 a.m. Starts at 5 on the dot. Not 5:01, not 4:59 — 5 a.m. You can't be pulling in the parking lot at 5 a.m. We probably got there at 4:30. I was still sleepy when he came to pick me up, so I don't know exactly what time. But we definitely got there around, like, 4:30," narrated Williams of their daily routine.
"We're warm and we started to work out, the lift, at 5. It's a tough lift, for sure. It's mostly core, pushing yourself to exhaustion and then seeing what you can do after that. Then, after that, it's on to the court. He puts himself through every situation he can possibly be in in the game – every double-team, triple-team. It's different. One-on-one, one-on-three. It's just different," Williams continued.
Then, after a brief break where DeRozan goes home to spend time with his family, Williams said they go at it all over again in the afternoon. While the routine was physically intense, he relayed that it was just as tough mentally.
"Everything DeMar does is mental, so you're going to take a jump in terms of how you look at things, how you approach whatever it may be, whether it's a practice or a game or whatever. Whether it's life or basketball, just how you approach things, how he approaches things is something I kind of picked up on," Williams said.
Can Williams make the jump?
As the Bulls head to the 2022-2023 season, many anticipate Williams to take a "jump." With a couple of years of experience under his belt and having gone through one of the most strenuous offseason workouts in recent memory, Williams looks poised to make an impact for the Bulls this coming season.
With DeRozan and fellow All-Star Zach LaVine in his ear, and Williams' work ethic, it's hard to bet against him. What remains to be seen is how much Williams has actually improved and if he can make the necessary impact for the Bulls to take that next step as a team.