Grant Williams sends strong message on Jayson Tatum defending his Boston Celtics tenure

Boston Celtics v Miami Heat - Game Six
Boston Celtics v Miami Heat - Game Six / Megan Briggs/GettyImages

In the wake of his deadline trade from the Dallas Mavericks to the Charlotte Hornets, there's been a narrative formed that Grant Williams was an annoying locker room presence in the DFW and during his first four years with the Boston Celtics.

Jayson Tatum had none of it, defending Williams and claiming he was a great teammate. And that resonated with Williams.

“Yeah, that meant the world,” Williams said of Tatum defending him (h/t Charlotte Observer). “And honestly, I didn’t even ask him. So, that’s why it was even cooler and I had to thank him afterward because that’s my dog for life. And all those guys up in Boston are. I talk to those guys more than most in my whole life career. (Derrick White), Payton (Prichard), Sam (Hauser), Al (Horford) — those guys have been huge over the course of my career and the time I spent there in Boston."

Mike Gorman claimed Grant Williams was annoying in Boston Celtics locker room

Stories have come out from Williams' time with the Mavs, specifically a tale about poking the bear during a scrimmage and provoking Luka Doncic to go scorched earth on him, but Mike Gorman was who provoked Tatum to defend the Hornets combo big after claiming he was "annoying to everybody."

“He was annoying to everybody. I think, initially, everybody thought he was kind of a wise-ass, but he’s kind of cute, and he’s kind of funny,” Gorman said of Williams (h/t “Then it just kind of wore thin. It got thin in Dallas, obviously. …He had some issues in that area that if he doesn’t get rid of, he doesn’t have enough for teams to say, ‘Well OK, but despite that, we’re going to keep him here because he’s a great player.’ He’s not.

“He’s an extra. An eighth, ninth, or 10th guy on your roster, so those guys are very replaceable. The guy’s a bad locker room guy. If you’re a bad locker room guy, you’re an eighth or ninth guy, you’re not going to be the eighth or ninth guy for long because you’re not going to be on the team for long.”

The attack from Gorman was shocking, but Tatum's defense isn't. For years, amidst disappointing early playoff exits, the Cs have portrayed camaraderie and closeness -- and evidently, Tatum subscribes the "once a Celtic, always a Celtic" motto. At least when it comes to rebuking attacks on his ex-teammate.