May 15, 2014, 7:49 PM EST
Let’s start here: Brooklyn owes Deron Williams $63 million over the next three seasons. Fully guaranteed.
Williams is a good point guard — 16 points a game, true shooting percentage of .564, 6.1 assists to 2.2 turnovers a game — but he is no longer great. Physically his chronic ankle issues have slowed him, he is not the same guy as the one offered that massive contract.
And things are not getting a whole lot better — he said he likely needs surgery on both ankles again this summer.
An MRI is coming Friday but Williams seems to think there will be surgery, he told ESPNNewYork.com.
“I think so. I think it is,” Williams replied Thursday when asked about the possibility of undergoing surgery. “Just to clean [stuff out], it’s nothing major.”
Three times this season Williams had PRP blood platelet injections and cortisone injections in his ankle, he also had an anti-inflammatory injection before Game 7 against the Raptors. All of that allowed him to play, but he’s not the player that used to be discussed in the same sentence as Chris Paul.
Williams was frustrated in the wake of the Nets loss to the Heat — point guard is a position where teams try to exploit the Heat but Williams didn’t take great advantage of that.
“I feel like I’ve kind of let people down, so I don’t like feeling like that,” Williams said. “I take my job seriously, I work hard in the offseason, I work hard every day. It’s just real frustrating not to be able to play how I’m capable of playing.”
The Nets are in a bind this summer, with a massive payroll for an aging roster. There are only a couple ways they can realistically improve, and a healthy Deron Williams is one of them.
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