Jason Kidd, Deron Williams

Deron Williams, Jason Kidd (AP)

Deron Williams is most definitely not cut from Allen Iverson's cloth.

Not many max-contract players like coming off the bench, and fewer would suggest it themselves, but Williams is one exception. After a little over two weeks off to rest after a sprained left ankle, platelet-rich plasma treatment in both ankles, and cortisone shots in both ankles, Williams elected to come off the bench for the first time since February 2, 2006.

"We've been playing so well with that (starting) lineup, why shake things up?" Williams explained after the team's 103-80 victory over the Knicks. "It doesn't matter if I come off, start, whatever. The way Joe (Johnson)'s been playing in the first quarter, first half, I don't want to disrupt that."

Johnson scored 20 points in the first half, 15 with Williams on the bench. Johnson finished with a team-high 25 points.

The conversation with Kidd to bring Williams off the bench was easy, according to Williams. With a game tomorrow against the Orlando Magic, it's not clear if they'll continue to bring him along slowly, though Williams was open to the idea. "Why not?"

"I've never been a person to care about that type of thing," he later added. "It's not a big deal."

(Don't tell Iverson.)

He & the team will evaluate how he feels tonight and tomorrow morning before proceeding.

With Williams's decision to come off the bench, Shaun Livingston and Alan Anderson stayed in the lineup, next to Joe Johnson, Paul Pierce, and Kevin Garnett. The Nets are 5-0 when they run out that lineup, and 7-1 overall in 2014.

Williams played 27 minutes, a fair portion of them in garbage time in the second half. He finished with 13 points, three rebounds, and three assists on 4-10 shooting.

 

Jason Kidd, Deron Williams

Jason Kidd, Deron Williams (AP)

As expected, point guard Deron Williams will suit up for the Brooklyn Nets in his first game back since undergoing platelet-rich plasma therapy treatment and cortisone shots on both ankles.

Williams will come off the bench in his return against the New York Knicks, his first time off the bench since February 2, 2006. He will have a minutes restriction under 30 minutes, according to coach Jason Kidd.

"(I'm looking) for him to sweat a little bit, have some fun, knock down shots," Kidd said before Monday afternoon's game. "But just try to get his legs and feet under him and have a positive experience."

Kidd elected to keep his same starting lineup against the Knicks, with Shaun Livingston, Alan Anderson, Joe Johnson, Paul Pierce, and Kevin Garnett. The lineup has won all four games it's played this season.

Williams last played on January 4th, in a victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers. The team announced his ankle sprain and treatment on January 7th, following an MRI the day before.

 

Good morning, Nets fans. It's cold. The Nets are undefeated in 2014. Here's some info on tonight's game, plus some Nets news and notes from around the 'net:
... MORE →

 

Deron Williams ankle injury

Is there a light at the end of the tunnel? (AP)

Good morning. Thank you for your continued support of The Brooklyn Game. Here's some Nets news and notes from around the 'net:
... MORE →

 

Deron Williams has undergone PRP treatment to help his ailing ankles. AP/Kathy Willens

Deron Williams has undergone PRP treatment to help his ailing ankles. AP/Kathy Willens

Deron Williams will miss Wednesday's game vs. the Golden State Warriors and be reevaluated later in the week after receiving platelet-rich plasma treatment and cortisone shots in both his ankles, the Nets announced Tuesday.

There is no timetable for Williams' recovery, and he may miss Friday's game vs. the Miami Heat.

In the short term, this is bad news for the Nets, who face this challenging two-game stretch on a three-game 2014 win streak. Without Williams' production and leadership, one might question Brooklyn's ability to compete in either of these two games. If Williams' PRP treatments last year are any indication, though, this will be great news from a season-outlook standpoint.

Williams suffered mightily from sprained ankles last season and underwent the PRP treatment during the All-Star break, after which he was a completely different player, reminiscent of his peak self. Williams' on-court limping and lack of athleticism remind me of him before his treatment last year, so the hope is that the treatment will mirror last year's results.

 

ap17309352500_7

Picture 1 of 10

 

Shaun Livingston

Point guard/secret power forward Shaun Livingston. (AP)

Good morning, Nets fans and derelicts. Here's a recap of last night's Nets festivities:
... MORE →

 

Deron Williams had his best game of the season last game against the Oklahoma City Thunder, dropping 29 points, 5 steals, and 4 assists in the 95-93 Nets victory. Williams showed flashes of his Utah days, and Saturday night against the Cavaliers has been no exception: watch this killer crossover on Cavaliers rookie Mathew Dellavedova, drawing a foul and hitting the jumper. It's a beauty.

 

The answer at center? (AP)

The answer at center? (AP)

With the 7'2" All-Star center Brook Lopez out for the season with a broken foot, Nets head coach Jason Kidd may have found his replacement in the starting lineup -- 6'7" point guard Shaun Livingston.

Wait, what?... MORE →

 

The Nets and Heat will wear jerseys with nicknames on the back for their game on January 10, and today, Slam Magazine has released a few of the images.

A few of the Nets jerseys are as follows:

And for the Heat:

For the Nets, the D-Will and Truth ones were no-brainers. Kirilenko's is so cool with the Russian spelling of his name.

I got really sad in realizing that we'll never see Brook Lopez's "Brooklyn on the front, Brooklyn on the back" jersey.

 

Joe Johnson

The Nets are headed for disaster. (AP/Kathy Willens)

Could F. Scott Fitzgerald have a written a story with better symbolism than the Brooklyn Nets literally abandoning their 113-92 loss to the San Antonio Spurs tonight with 0.2 seconds left on the clock?

It was a miserable end to a miserable game, the 31st of a miserable, possibly lost season. Things have gotten so bad for the Nets that there aren't many more questions left to ask that don't involve the words "when" and "fired." Beating the Spurs with a full roster that actually cares to play basketball is a daunting task in itself; when your players are lethargic and effortless, it becomes a joke. Gregg Popovich's fine-tuned execution machine chewed the Nets up and spit them out like the sad excuse for a basketball team they are right now.

There are plenty of things wrong with Brooklyn right now: Brook Lopez is out for the season, there is no leadership, there is no semblance of a reliable offensive or defensive system. But there is no hope to establish any of these things without the will to actually try and not wilt under the slightest of pressures. The Nets tonight could not even bother to drag their sorry asses out of the tunnel to finish the final 0.2 seconds of the game. Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce seem disinterested, Deron Williams doesn't seem to care, and what's left is a smorgasbord of players who'd like to play but just can't carry a team without the primary players.

This is a bleak team with a bleak outlook. There's no out in sight for the salary-cap hell in which the Nets are imprisoned over the next several years, and the players seem to realize their dismal circumstances. There's no fight, even in a scummy Eastern Conference. The problems are everywhere, and the Nets would rather live in filth than pick up a mop. Maybe Gerald Wallace was right about this team.

Jason Kidd thought he had a handle on this team, but he's no match for the storm of despair that has appeared over Brooklyn. Do these guys want to play for him? It's not for me to say. But whether they're sulking because of Kidd or in spite of him, it's the head coach's job to find some object of positivity, some common goal to encourage players to work. Jeff Hornacek's doing it in Phoenix. Tom Thibodeau has done it the last year and a half without Derrick Rose. They found a way to inspire hard work and effort in far worse situations than the Nets find themselves.

It would be nice if the Nets devised a resolution to try and win regardless of their circumstances, but I fear 2014 will bring more of the same. Of course there is still time to turn things around, but the more I watch this team, the more I see doom. A lot of people on this team would be elsewhere — I often wonder how Garnett and Pierce would be faring alongside their longtime captain Doc Rivers in Los Angeles or Deron Williams in Houston — and it results in an unwatchable slog on a night-to-night basis.

The Nets may have already cast aside the possibility of a positive resolution in 2014. Well, here's mine: if the Nets don't want to be watched, let me oblige them.

I doubt that one will be successful.