Deron Williams became the focal point of the Brooklyn Nets when he re-signed with the team this summer, choosing the newly relocated organization over his hometown Dallas Mavericks.
Before Williams’ free agency began, though, he was offering advice to Nets general manager Billy King. He urged the team not to throw all its eggs in one basket. In other words, don’t devote everything to land Dwight Howard.
“One thing Deron did say to me, he said, ‘Please just don’t wait on Dwight. We can’t wait and not have a team,” King said during a premiere of NBA TV’s “The Association: Brooklyn Nets.”
It would have been the perfect pick and roll combination, Williams and Howard, but instead the Lakers eventually traded to get Howard.
King took Williams advice. Sort of. After multiple attempts to bring Howard to Brooklyn from the Orlando Magic, including offering Brook Lopez and Kris Humphries, MarShon Brooks and first-round picks, the Nets ultimately built their team with key pieces instead. Brooklyn brought in nine new players, mainly star shooting guard Joe Johnson, to support Williams.
“The team of Brooklyn is bigger than one person,” King said on the premiere. “I owed it to the organization, I owed it to our fans, I owed it to Deron and the players that we have to build for Brooklyn, and we went forward and built our team.”
Williams has been in the news this week for suggesting that Dallas owner Mark Cuban’s absence from meetings played a role in why he chose the Nets over the Mavericks. Cuban was filming the reality show Shark Tank when Williams met with Mavs executives. Williams said, “I think if he was there, he would have been able to answer those questions a little better. Maybe would have helped me.”