PHOENIX SUNS

Suns’ Chris Paul, Monty Williams embrace after earning WCF spot

Jun 13, 2021, 9:38 PM | Updated: Jun 14, 2021, 8:39 am
Head coach Monte Williams of the Phoenix Suns hugs Chris Paul #3 after action against the Denver Nu...
Head coach Monte Williams of the Phoenix Suns hugs Chris Paul #3 after action against the Denver Nuggets in Game Four of the Western Conference second-round playoff series at Ball Arena on June 13, 2021 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)
(Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)

Phoenix Suns point guard Chris Paul and head coach Monty Williams have been around the league a long time, both chasing a dream of playing on the sport’s grandest stage.

The two are trying to make that dream a reality with the Phoenix Suns, a franchise that prior to this season had been stuck in a decade-long playoff drought.

Phoenix completed a sweep of the Denver Nuggets on Sunday, advancing the team to the Western Conference Finals.

Paul and Wiliams shared a hug after the game, a moment of joy for both on a long journey.

“Chris has meant so much to my career, so much to my life,” Williams said after the game.

It marks the second time the two have been together playing in the summer for a trophy.

“To be on this journey with him and to see it paying off is nice,” Paul said, adding the two are a lot alike and stay locked in until the buzzer sounds.

“When the series is over and the game is over, it’s nice to share those moments.”

Paul was a focal point on the New Orleans Hornets when Williams was hired prior to the 2010-11 season, becoming the youngest head coach in the NBA at 38 years old.

The team made the playoffs but lost in the First Round.

Paul left after that season to join the Los Angeles Clippers and later the Houston Rockets and Oklahoma City Thunder, picking up a number of playoff appearances along the way but never getting to that ultimate goal.

Even though both spent a decade in different locker rooms, the two didn’t lose their bond, with Paul being there for Williams when his wife died in a car crash in 2016.

“The darkest moment of my life, Chris was right there,” Williams said.

The moment was emotional for Paul, considering what Williams had been through since the last time they shared a court.

“Mont has been through things in his life that a lot of people don’t necessarily come back from,” Paul said. “Basketball aside, he means so much to me and my family.”

On Sunday, Paul was there for his coach on the floor, leading all Suns in scoring with 37 points to get both closer to their goal of an NBA Championship.

“One of the highlights of my career, he’s right there,” Williams said.

“I’m grateful to God for him and all of our guys.”

Phoenix Suns

Phoenix Suns guard Chris Paul (3) shields the ball from Sacramento Kings guard Davion Mitchell duri...
Kellan Olson

Suns nearly pull off last-minute rally before falling to Kings at buzzer

The Phoenix Suns continue to struggle to find their form from last season that won them the Western Conference.
13 hours ago
Sacramento Kings forward Harrison Barnes shoots over Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton (22) during ...
Arizona Sports

Phoenix Suns Deandre Ayton records first double-double in loss to Kings

Center Deandre Ayton had a strong performance, but the Phoenix Suns lost to the visiting Sacramento Kings.
2 days ago
Phoenix Suns forward Mikal Bridges goes to the basket against Sacramento Kings center Richaun Holme...
Kellan Olson

Kings’ offensive firepower presents good test for Suns’ recent defensive issues

The Phoenix Suns' defense hasn't been up to par three games into the season and they are hosting a Kings team with lots of offensive skill.
3 days ago
Ishmail Wainright #12 of the Toronto Raptors brings the ball up the court against the New York Knic...
Sam Graveline

Ish Wainright relishing new opportunity with Phoenix Suns

After playing overseas for a handful of seasons, new Suns forward Ish Wainright feels blessed to have a spot on an NBA team.
3 days ago
Head coach Monty Williams of the Phoenix Suns reacts during the first half of the NBA game against ...
Kellan Olson

Suns can tighten up during lengthy homestand after challenging open to season

The Phoenix Suns get an extended break at home after starting the season with three games in four days and a road back-to-back.
4 days ago
Phoenix Suns guard Chris Paul, right, is defended by Portland Trail Blazers forward Robert Covingto...
Kellan Olson

Phoenix Suns get pounced on by Blazers in blowout loss

The Suns looked like they were back on the right track after beating the Lakers but they lost that against the Blazers the next night.
6 days ago
Suns’ Chris Paul, Monty Williams embrace after earning WCF spot