Lou Williams might not get the last laugh, but he can at least smile.
A year after being traded from his hometown team, Williams was named the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year after receiving 78 of a possible 130 first-place votes in his first season with the Toronto Raptors.
Williams averaged a career-high 15.5 points per game, a season after scoring just 10.4 points per game, his lowest mark since 2006-07. He came off the bench in all 80 games he appeared in.
The Raptors won a franchise-record 49 games despite injuries to Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan. He led the team in scoring 18 teams, and Toronto was 14-4 in those games.
He thought he’d finish his career in his hometown Atlanta with the Hawks. But the Hawks traded him to Toronto for John Salmons, who the team immediately waived.
He finished runner-up for the award three seasons ago before signing with Atlanta. He’s the first Raptors player to ever win the award.
Williams has found individual success, but the Hawks finished with the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference.