Nets GM Says Deron Williams Can Regain Elite Status

Deron Williams has struggled for the second consecutive season, and seen his numbers dip across the board. Injuries have been a major factor, but Brooklyn Nets general manager Billy King says he still has plenty of faith in his floor general. Per the NY Daily News: “When the Nets acquired Deron Williams and double-downed on his ability to be a franchise player, Billy King called him the best point guard in the NBA. Two struggle-filled years later – and on the same day Williams underwent PRP treatments in both ankles to alleviate inflammation, putting him out of commission until after the All-Star break – King said Williams can reclaim that status, even as his production has dropped in almost every statistical category since leaving Utah. ‘I’ve seen it,’ the GM said. ‘He’s done it.’ King ratcheted up his defense of Williams when pressed further. He admitted Williams has ‘not had the best year,’ but attributed that mostly to injuries, exhaustion and a lack of explosiveness. He compared the circumstances to Carmelo Anthony’s last season, when the Knicks forward struggled with an elbow injury and Mike D’Antoni’s system. Amid speculation that Williams has also been slowed by weight-gain, King said the three-time All-Star is just one pound heavier than when he was dealt from Utah. ‘You’re digging. You’re digging. And you’re asking valid questions, but (the inflammation to Williams’ ankles) is not a concern,’ King said. ‘Kobe’s had the blood-platelet spinning on his knees, and guys have had it. It happens. So let’s not make this a bigger issue than it is. Let’s let him get through this, have a week off and get back to playing basketball. Let’s not put the dirt on him and say his career’s over at 28. I think the same questions were asked last year about Carmelo Anthony when they were struggling and people were writing him off, saying is he’s not the same player. I think he bounced back this year.’ […] ‘Am I confident he’s going to get back to being Deron Williams? Yes.'”