Over the next week or two at From Russia With Dunk, we will be doing player profiles for all of the 2012-13 Brooklyn Nets. In these profiles we will talk about players’ performances last season, what they did in the offseason, and give predictions and projections for the coming season. We will start with the Nets’ $100 million man and all-star point guard, Deron Williams.
2011-2012 stats: 55 gms, 36 min, 40% FG, 34% 3-pt FG, 3.3 rpg, 8.7 apg, 1.2 spg, 4.0 to, 21.0 ppg.
Deron Williams recently admitted that the 2011-12 season was the hardest year of his life. Although he was relatively healthy after recovering from wrist surgery and playing in Turkey during the lockout, the rest of the New Jersey Nets had one of the most injury-plagued seasons in NBA history, which really frustrated Williams. Whenever he seemed to get in a flow with a player, like Brook Lopez, for example, that player always seemed to get injured and ruin whatever chemistry was developing. Even though Deron’s stats were not bad in 2012, he had to take too many shots and did not get enough help on offense. And on defense, the Nets were one of the worst teams in the NBA, too. If Deron thought that the Nets would ever repeat their performance last season, he would not have re-signed with the team.
Offseason report: Re-signed with Nets for 5 years, $100 million, won gold medal with Team USA in Olympics
Not many basketball players had busier offseasons than Deron Williams. Starting in July, Deron quickly signed a 5-year max contract with the Nets despite an enticing offer from the Dallas Mavericks. After that, Deron was whisked away into Team USA training games to warm up for the Olympics. Deron started in one of those warm-up games, but for the most part, he was Chris Paul’s backup on Team USA. In limited playing time, D-Will averaged 9.0 ppg and 4.6 apg for the Americans. Team USA went undefeated in the Olympics this year to win gold, giving Deron his second Olympic gold medal and the Nets their first Olympic gold medalist. In addition to playing in the Olympics, Deron was also helping the Nets recruit players to Brooklyn. He was very happy about the Joe Johnson trade, and he says that it was one of the big moves in convincing him to re-sign in Brooklyn. He also played a part in getting veterans like Reggie Evans, C.J. Watson, and Jerry Stackhouse to Brooklyn. Following the Olympics, Deron quickly went back to the PNY center in New Jersey to get ready for the 2012-13 season.
Predictions for 2012-13: Deron will prove why many believe he is a top-tier NBA point guard, if not the best point guard in basketball.
I think that Deron Williams will have a monster 2013 season. This will be the most talent he has ever played with, even more talented than some of his teams in Utah, one of which made the Western Conference Finals. This will lead to a big increase in Deron’s assist numbers and field goal percentage. The thing that will determine if this will be a good season or a great season for D-Will will be his turnover numbers. He averaged 4 per game last season when he had to have the ball in his hands on just about every possession. He will need to cut that number down this season for the Nets to be as good as they are capable of being. The best case scenario for Deron is that he creates the best offensive team in the NBA, turning himself into an MVP candidate for the Brooklyn Nets. The worst case scenario is that he has a season similar to last season where he had a bad field goal percentage and too many turnovers.
Projections for 2012-13: 20 ppg, 11.5 apg, 4.0 rpg, 3.0 to, 45% FG, 38% 3-pt FG