The New Jersey Nets will cease to exist after this season; as they will be moving to their new home in Brooklyn starting next year. Last February, the club traded some very talented young players to the Utah Jazz and received Deron Williams one of the best point guards currently playing in the Association in return. The Nets want to build a team around the All-Star guard who can become a Free Agent at the end of the campaign. D-Will has stated that he would be interested in re-signing with the club if certain conditions are met.
Tuesday night, New Jersey was beaten up the visiting Atlanta Hawks in the team’s home opener by a final tally of 106-70. After the game Williams talked with the “New York Times” about what the club needs to do to turn things around. Williams told reporters “We need some more pieces. There’s no secret about that. There’s not many starters on our team right now. We have a lot of great role players, a lot of guys who know their job, but in this league you need some top-tier guys so you can get the job done.”
New Jersey was in discussions with the Orlando Magic about the possibility of the Magic trading Dwight Howard to the Nets in exchange for a parcel of players. Those conversations were put on hold last week when New Jersey starting center Brook Lopez underwent surgery to repair a stress fracture in his right foot. Orlando would only make the deal with a healthy Lopez in the package.
Williams did not let himself off the hook while doling out blame for the loss against the Hawks. He said “I had one assist, six turnovers tonight; I don’t know if that’s ever happened in my life. It’s a learning process. Normally I’d be upset. I am upset, but normally I’d be worse than I am right now. I expect things to get better before they get worse. It’s difficult for a point guard to try to pick your spots. I’m having a tough time right now. In Utah I knew what play to run to give me a shot, give my teammates a shot, where my teammates like the ball. Now I’m still trying to learn that.”
The veteran wants to see concrete evidence that the team is heading in the right direction before he commits to a long-term deal with the club. There will be plenty of other options waiting for D-Will if he chooses not to stay with the Nets; reports out of Dallas are that the reason the Mavericks allowed three valuable players to leave via Free Agency this month is that they want to clear cap space to bring both Williams and Howard on board next season.