Saturday, May 4, 2013
D-Will's perfect Game 7 record on the line
By Mike Mazzeo
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Deron Williams has done this before.
Back on May 5, 2007, Williams had 20 points and 14 assists, leading the Utah Jazz to a 103-99 road victory over the Houston Rockets in Game 7 of the Western Conference quarterfinals.
D-Will considers that win perhaps the finest of his career.
“It’s win or go home,” Williams said Saturday morning before Game 7 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals against the Chicago Bulls at Barclays Center.
“I’ve won the only one I’ve ever played in, so hopefully I can make it 2-0.”
P.J. Carlesimo, who has never won a playoff series as a head coach, was asked how confident his team was heading into this do-or-die elimination game.
“I think we’re very confident, and I’m glad we are, but it’s irrelevant,” Carlesimo replied.
“You’ve got to go out and you’ve gotta play for 48 minutes. I think we’re in a good place. I think they understand how hard they worked to get the thing back here for a Game 7, but at the same time, it’s meaningless if we don’t finish the job.”
Added Williams: “We’re confident. We did what we said we were gonna do: take it one game at a time. We got those two wins [with our backs against the wall], and now we’re in the position we’re in now.”
The Nets have a chance to become just the ninth team in NBA history to rally back from a 3-1 deficit in a best-of-seven playoff series.
“We don’t pay attention as far as how many teams have come back from 3-1,” Joe Johnson said. “We’ve been confident from the start of this series, and our focus is Game 7 and just trying to come out and hit first.”
“Like I said all season, we’ve been resilient,” Williams said.
The Nets will face the Miami Heat in Round 2 if they win Saturday night.
“We’re not worried about Miami right now,” Williams said.
• The Nets reported no injuries, although Johnson (foot), Andray Blatche (calf) and Reggie Evans (illness) aren’t 100 percent. Still, everyone is expected to play.