Williams Trade Brings up Lots of Questions

by Jeeves

As I’m sure you’ve all heard, Deron Williams was traded to the Nets (or Nyets, if you prefer). I’m not going to break this one down like I did the ‘Melo trade (check our Zach Lowe for that), but I do want to address some of the questions this trade brings up.

1) Would the Nets really trade for Williams without a stipulation that he sign an extension?

At best, I would put Williams resigning with the Nets at 50-50. He has no personal ties to the area being, from Texas and playing college ball at Illinois, the Nets are a terrible team, and, well, for now, they’re in New Jersey. It doesn’t seem like there’s much to keep Deron there instead of bolting come 2012. There are two reasons he may stay. First, with the new CBA, it may be unpalatable for him to leave. The new CBA may heavily stack things in favor of teams resigning their own free agents. The second reason is also tied to the CBA. The Nyets and Williams may be able to lure a second free agent, ahem…Dwight Howard. Suddenly you have a way better version of the Kidd-Martin pairing of the Nets recent glory years.

2) So it’s possible the Nets could get nothing out of this deal come 2012?

It’s quite possible. The way in which the media has painted owner Mikhail Prokhorov is that of a risk taker. So, as far as I can tell, he took a risk. He knows its easier to retain players than to woo them on the open market. He knows his Nets team sucks. He knows that star players shape NBA teams. He didn’t have to make this move, but it does, at least, seem like a reasonable gamble. If Williams leaves, and they don’t sign a different 2012 free agent, they’ll be back to where they are now.

3) What does this say about Williams that the Jazz dropped him so quickly?

Well, clearly something went down that hasn’t been reported. We just had Sloan up and quit after 20+ years on the sidelines, due, we’re told, mostly to Williams. So did Williams do something so atrocious during the game against the Bulls that it made Sloan want to leave and force management to seek a trade or has he done something in the intervening days? Something is rotten in the state of Utah.

4) Will whatever baggage Williams bring play in New Jersey?

Your guess is as good as mine.

5) When was the last time we saw a huge NBA trade with no media buildup?

I’m having trouble comping up with a comparable trade. The Gasol trade was surprising, I suppose, but in a different way. He was clearly on the block, but I don’t recall (I may be wrong here) much buildup about him going to the Lakers. 3 years ago, though, is a loooong time in terms of the 24 hour news cycle that we now have. This one is pretty shocking, the Jazz traded a franchise player, under contract and I didn’t hear a peep about the possibility.

6) Does Sloan come back now?

I doubt it. He rode his tractor into the sunset and I think he’ll remain retired for at least this season. I read that he also felt undermined by management, so perhaps Williams wasn’t the only issue.

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