My High Hopes For The Year

Yesterday we scared you guys.  Mark and I each gave you a few concerns we had going into the season, but as Mark told you earlier, today is different.  Today is opening day, the day when everyone is still in playoff contention (In fact we already have a better record than 4 teams – progress!).  Here are a few things I am looking forward to seeing happen (and I expect most of these will) this year:

Terrence Williams Will Be A Top Rookie

You guys probably guessed that I would be talking about T-Will here.  Terrence Williams had his struggles this preseason, but in that last game you saw what he can do when he put everything together.  I mean look at his line – 23 points, 5 rebounds, 8 assists, and 4 steals.  That’s fantastic.

We went into the preseason knowing that he could effect the game without scoring, but people were worried about his shooting.  He put those doubts to rest though (in my mind at least).  Terrence shot 42% from 3 (8-19) and and 39% overall (27-68).  Terrence Williams has also started to attack the basket more often, going to the line 22 times total in his last 3 preseason games.  Now I know that this is all in the preseason, but many people were expecting nightmarish shooting numbers from Terrence, and he showed us the opposite.

Brook Lopez Becoming A Double-Double Player

Now I won’t go as far as to say he will average 20 and 10 (it wouldn’t surprise me if he did though), but I think it is entirely possible that Brook will put up 16 and 10 or something like that over the course of the season.  Some people may not agree with this, claiming that without Vince Carter there isn’t anyone drawing double teams away from Brook.  I look at it like this though, there are much more touches now available without Vince.  Plus, Brook has shown that he can run the floor this preseason, and that will lead to many more easy buckets.

Sean Williams Might Be Getting It

Early in the preseason, I took a couple shots at Sean Williams, but it looks like he may be starting to get it.  I credit my change of heart to the two times I saw him live, one far away and one up close.  The first was when I saw the Nets play the Knicks in Madison Square Garden.  Sure he only played six minutes, scoring only 2 points with one rebound and one steal, but the boxscore doesn’t really tell the whole story here.  In the game, Josh Boone looked unmotivated and sluggish.  Enter Sean Williams.  Sean Williams was flying all over the court running up and down, diving for lose balls, and just playing with energy.  I will take 82 of those performances.  The second time was when Mark and I visited Nets practice last Thursday.  Who was one of the last guys on the court?  Sean Williams was, working on his post game with Nets assistant Roy Rogers.  Who knows if this is the year Sean can finally have the mental side of his game with the physical side, but this is the most confident I have felt about him going into the season his whole career.