‘Grey’s Anatomy’s’ Jesse Williams Reflects on Sarah Drew’s Exit: ‘It’s Unfortunate’ (Exclusive)

Grey's Anatomy starsBy Philiana Ng

One month after Grey’s Anatomy said goodbye to Sarah Drew, star Jesse Williams is looking back on her emotional final day.

In the Grey’s season 14 finale that aired on May 17, Drew’s April revealed she was leaving Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital as an attending trauma surgeon for a new career helping the less fortunate. She also walked down the aisle in an impromptu wedding with rekindled flame Matthew (Justin Bruening), as her ex-husband, Jackson (Williams), happily stood by her side. Drew’s exit was announced in March; she had been on the series for nine seasons.

ET caught up with Williams at the NBA Awards red carpet on Monday, where he reflected on Drew’s surprising departure, calling the entire situation “sad.”

“I mean, the whole thing is sad. It’s unfortunate,” Williams, 36, told ET at The Barker Hangar in Santa Monica, California. “That’s my partner, my road dog, so it was unpleasant, but she’s such a professional and did such incredible work down to the last frame and I’m really proud to have had our time together.”

Williams, who joined Grey’s in season six (the same season as Drew), hinted that he fought hard for Drew to stay on past season 14.

“Well, I always make my opinion known. I’ll leave it at that!” he said.

When news broke in March that Drew and fellow longtime star Jessica Capshaw would be leaving at the end of the season, Williams made his feelings known in a series of candid tweets. “Sarah and Jessica are easily among my very favorite people and coworkers, so this news f**kin sucks. Their immense talent speaks for itself but it’s them as people that I’m so grateful to know, privileged to have worked with and learned from,” Williams wrote in one of the tweets after their exits were made official.

But not to worry, April and Jackson will live on. Asked if he’s kept in touch with Drew recently, Williams confirmed in the affirmative. “Always,” he assured. “We spoke yesterday [Sunday].”

A new romance may be in the air for Williams. Amid rumblings that he has started up a new romance with sports anchor Taylor Rooks, the two kept their distance at the NBA Awards, though both walked the carpet separately. This not-so-joint appearance from Williams and Rooks took place a month after rumors first started circulating that he was reportedly dating the SportsNet New York anchor.

The pair were reportedly seen together as they attended Kevin Hart’s stand-up comedy performance at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey, over the Memorial Day weekend.

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