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Wake Forest director of basketball operations knew Chris Paul was ‘special’ after he crossed over Jay Williams

Thunder, Chris Paul

Wake Forest director of basketball operations Tim Fuller knew current Oklahoma City Thunder point guard Chris Paul was “special” after he crossed over Jay Williams while still being in high school.

Fuller would have Paul play against college players while he was still in high school because Paul was just better than everyone. One day, Paul was playing a pick-up game at Duke against Williams, who was the best point guard in college at the time and a surefire lottery pick in the NBA.

Once Fuller saw Paul take it to Williams, he knew Paul had something you couldn’t teach.

“When I looked in the open gym (before Paul’s junior year of high school), I was like, ‘These guys aren’t going to get you better; let’s go play against the college dudes.’ So I started bringing over all my former teammates at Wake Forest,” Fuller told C.L. Brown of The Athletic.

“We played at N.C. State, played at Duke, and he’s holding his own. We get out on the court to Cameron Indoor for a pickup game and him and Jay Williams were going head to head. He (Paul) came down and hit J-Will with a mean cross — boom — and dropped it off for a layup. I was like, Hold up. You’re doing this against a future pro. This was arguably the best guard in the ACC so I was like, This dude has got something special that you can’t teach.”

Chris Paul has carved out a Hall of Fame career in the NBA. The nine-time All-Star has career averages of 18.5 points, 4.5 rebounds and 9.7 assists in 950 games.

The Thunder acquired Paul this summer from the Houston Rockets in the Russell Westbrook trade. Paul will run the Thunder’s offense next season and try lead OKC to a playoff berth in the rugged Western Conference.