Cavs History: John “Hot Rod” Williams

This is a highlight video that’s sure to get you ready for a big weekend.  At the thirty second mark Hot Rod gets into it with none other than Larry Bird, and shortly after that he blows by Laimbeer to finish with authority up at the rim. 

Pretty good video quality on this one too, check it out:

via: YouTube – Patrys15

The Cavaliers raised eyebrows across the sports world in 1990 when they signed Williams to a $26.5 million contract, making him the highest paid player in the NBA for that season.  The $5 million he made that year was about $800 K more than Patrick Ewing who’s deal was the second highest total.

The deal worked out for the Cavaliers for the most part though, as Hot Rod was a consistently solid contributor and a key member of those teams back then even though they had to overpay to keep him. 

He averaged just over 12 points and 7 rebounds per game during 9 seasons with the Cavaliers from 1986-1995.  He would go on to play four more seasons after that, playing three with Phoenix, and then one with the Mavs to close out a 13-year NBA career.

Also, according to his Wikipedia page:  “Williams got the nickname “Hot Rod” as a baby due to his habit of scooting backwards across the floor while making engine-like sounds.” 

Brendan Bowers

About Brendan Bowers

I am the founding editor of I am also a content strategist and social media manager with Electronic Merchant Systems in Cleveland. My work has been published in SLAM Magazine, KICKS Magazine, The Locker Room Magazine,,, and elsewhere. I've also written a lot of articles that have been published here.