Williams exacts payback on Jeremy Lin

February, 21, 2012
2/21/12
11:05
AM ET
Deron Williams had it circled.

Williams hadn't forgotten the events of Feb. 4, when he helped spawn "Linsanity," allowing Jeremy Lin to exploit him and his teammates for 25 points and seven assists. So 16 days later, D-Will desperately wanted to make Jeremy look "Lin-significant."

Yes, in the words of Rex Ryan, this one was "personal."

"I don't really watch 'SportsCenter' and I don't really watch too many games," Williams said. "But when I went on Twitter and people were tweeting at me, every three lines was Jeremy Lin destroyed Deron Williams, so I definitely took offense to that from the first game. Like I said, I had it circled."

Even before tipoff, New York Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony could see the fire in Williams' eyes.

"We're competitors. I know I would [want revenge]," Anthony said. "I saw it in him in the captains' meeting at half court. You could just look at him and tell he was ready, ready for this game."

By the time the final buzzer sounded, there was no doubt. In what was unequivocally his best game with the New Jersey Nets, Williams exploded for a season-high 38 points -- 18 in the third quarter -- and knocked down a career-high eight 3-pointers, carrying his team to a 100-92 victory over the hated Knicks in front of a stunned sellout crowd at Madison Square Garden.

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TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Deron Williams
PTS AST STL MIN
18.5 6.4 1.4 37.5
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsK. Garnett 8.3
AssistsD. Williams 6.4
StealsD. Williams 1.4
BlocksB. Lopez 1.7