Atkinson, now the head coach of the Nets, imbued Williams with the importance of routine.
"Kenny is one of my favorite people of all time in the world," said Williams. "I give him a lot of credit for helping me get up when I was down and out."
For 2015, Williams was the sixth man of the year for the N.B.A. with the Toronto Raptors. But he has never been better, more efficient or more dynamic than he has been in his last two seasons with the Clippers, all from the age of 30, when most players see their production begin to erode.
In contrast, Williams, who has scored more points off the bench than any other player in league history, has only improved. This season, he averaged 20 points and 5.4 badists in just 26.6 minutes per game. Williams also had the ball in his hands more than ever, with the Clippers executing 32.4 percent of their plays when playing on the court, according to the usage rate statistics compiled by the Basketball Reference.
Getting out of banking was never something I necessarily wanted to do, but Williams has no doubt that the role has helped him preserve his career because it has taken minutes. He has averaged 24.6 minutes per game in his 14-year career. (LeBron James, by comparison, has averaged 38.6 minutes).
"It has given me the opportunity to stretch my career, and I think I'm at my best right now, man," Williams said. "I'm just rolling."
At the same time, Williams has his extravagant habits, which help him feel more stable, starting with his party-day breakfast: French fries, egg whites, French toast and chicken sausages along with a smoothie that sweetens with honey . He loads because he knows he will not eat again for a while.
"I guess my body has gotten used to that," said Williams, who will simply make the shake if the Clippers have an early warning.