Explaining D-Will's struggles in Brooklyn

May, 15, 2014
May 15
8:55
PM ET

Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE/Getty ImagesDeron Williams and the Nets have won one playoff series since Williams joined the team in Feb. 2011.


When the then-New Jersey Nets acquired Deron Williams in a trade with the Utah Jazz back in Feb. 2011, the move was thought to be the first of many to propel the Nets into Eastern Conference contenders for years to come. Things haven't quite worked out that way.

After averaging a career-best 24.3 points per game during the 2009-10 playoffs (when Williams led the Jazz to a series win over Carmelo Anthony and the Denver Nuggets), Williams has seen his post-season production drop off each season since joining the Nets.

Postseason Problems

Williams has seen his points, assists and shooting percentage all drop each postseason since leaving Utah. This year, Williams posted career, post-season lows in all three.

This postseason was the same story for Williams. The Nets' point guard saw his effective field goal percentage drop seven percentage points (52% to 45%). Williams especially struggled on the road in the playoffs this season. His net rating fell from 13.6 in Brooklyn to -3.6 away from home.

Losing his pick-and-roll touch

In Utah, Williams excelled in Jerry Sloan's famed pick-and-roll offense, running alongside Carlos Boozer to four straight post-season appearances. Since taking the lead for the Nets' offense, Williams has failed to find his rhythm in the pick and roll.

While Williams has averaged slightly more pick-and-roll plays per game since joining the Nets, his numbers have gone down across the board. But the blame may not be all on Williams in this case. When he ran the pick and roll this season, Williams and his teammates shot just above 45%. But in his final full season in Utah, the pick-and-roll offense produced a field goal percentage of nearly 50% with Williams running the show.

Williams left his jumper in Utah

After shooting 40% on jump shots in all but one of his five-and-a-half seasons with the Jazz, Williams has yet to finish with a field goal percentage at 40% since joining the Nets (just short this season at 39.7%).

Despite posting his best jump shooting season since moving to Brooklyn, Williams' shooting woes returned in the playoffs this year. Williams shot only 33.7% on jumpers, the worst percentage among Nets' starters during the postseason.

Williams had a night to especially forget in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Heat. The Nets' floor general finished 0-for-9 in the game, including 0-for-5 on jump shots.

Williams was held scoreless for the first time in 702 regular-season and playoff games in which he played at least 15 minutes. The last time he didn't score was Jan. 30, 2006, when he played nine minutes against the Spurs.


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