Deron Williams reticent to talk about Howard

Williams and Howard are apparently not as close as they were last offseason. Credit: Getty Images
Williams and Howard are apparently not as close as they were last offseason.
Credit: Getty Images

By: Larry Fleisher

A year ago many thought Deron Williams would be picking up assists feeding the ball into the low post for Dwight Howard  — either with the Nets or elsewhere.

It would have been a uniting of two friends, except it seems the All-Star players aren’t nearly as close now as in December 2011 when they had dinner in Orlando, Fla. with visions of Williams’s passes being turned into Howard dunks.

“Not really,” Williams said after practice Monday when asked if he spoken to Howard recently. “We haven’t talked as much as we had before everything went on. I don’t know what the reason is.”

The pairing never happened because Howard was traded to the Lakers in a four-team deal over the summer after Nets general manager Billy King’s offer of Brook Lopez, Kris Humphries, Marshon Brooks and four first-round picks was rebuffed.

Instead they will be on opposite ends of the court Tuesday night when the Nets face the Lakers, though only if Howard plays. Howard missed Los Angeles’s victories in Detroit and Minnesota with an injured shoulder and his status is uncertain.

Howard also missed three games in January with the same injury and rejoined the team in Detroit on Sunday after receiving platelet-rich plasma treatment in Los Angeles.

With Howard not on the horizon this year, and maybe not ever, Williams will possibly get his 5,000th assist feeding the ball into Brook Lopez, who is averaging 18.7 points per game on 52.6 percent shooting. It might also come from a pick-and-roll or isolation play after Williams encounters a double team.

“I don’t think like that,” Williams said. “We’re happy with Brook. We’re happy with the team that we have now so it’s not a shoulda-coulda-woulda scenario.”

When Williams (552 career games) reaches the milestone, he will become just the seventh player since 1985-86 to notch 5,000 assists in less than 600 games. He also will slot in behind Chris Paul (510) and Jason Kidd (531) as the third-fastest active player to reach 5,000 assists.

“That means that I’ve got a thousand more until I get 6,000,” Williams said. “That’s a great accomplishment, I think; 5,000 assists is a lot of assists and you say there’s only a handful of people that have done it.”

Williams is averaging 7.7 assists per game, his lowest total since his rookie season when he came off the bench in 33 games. In 19 games, under interim coach P.J.Carlesimo. Williams has totaled 140 assists for an average of 7.3 per game.

“I think more than most of the point guards in the league, he sees more doubles,” Carlesimo said. “First of all he posts up more than some and he isos [isolation] more than some, not more than a lot. So it’s not just in the open floor. It’s not just running a half court offense. A lot of his assists come from double teams or post up positions and it makes him different.”

Follow Nets beat writer Larry Fleisher on Twitter @LarryFleisher.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Oval oasis: Summer of fun kicks off this…

A bold partnership between the Fairmount Park Conservancy and the city's Parks and Recreation Department is kicking off this weekend with family activities re-activating this unused public space.

Local

African couple claiming misidentification in robbery case to…

At a bail hearing today for Vickson and Lorfu Korlewala, charged in the robbery of an 80-year-old woman, bail was reduced from $1 million total to $500,000.

International

Jews in eastern Ukraine ordered to register, Kerry…

Secretary of State John Kerry condemned reports that Jews in eastern Ukraine had been ordered to register with the authorities "or suffer the consequences."

National

Chelsea Clinton pregnant with first child

Chelsea Clinton is pregnant with her first child.

Television

Dick Wolf to bring fictionalized world of 'Law…

A&E has ordered a pilot called "D.O.A." from "Law and Order" mastermind Dick Wolf that will focus on real detectives reexamining cold cases. A trio…

Movies

Review: 'Transcendence' is not stupid but sometimes lacks…

The cyberthriller "Transcendence" explores artificial intelligence, nanotechnology and other ethical quandaries, but has too much ambition, if anything.

Television

Shane West talks WGN America's 'Salem'

The actor on history lessons, a new network and showing his butt.

Music

Both feet on the ground with Aimee Mann…

What began with a cool double-bill of Ted Leo opening for Aimee Mann morphed into a full-fledged collaborative project that they're calling The Both. “There…

MLB

Jimmy Rollins is key to Phillies success

When John Kruk was asked about what the Phillies need to contend for a playoff berth, the ESPN analyst said Jimmy Rollins needs to play like a MVP again.

MLB

Ben Revere lifts Phillies to avoid sweep

Ben Revere came through with a two-out RBI single against Atlanta’s tough lefthander Alex Wood.

NBA

Season wrap: 76ers make the grade

The 76ers opened the 2013-14 season with a victory over the Miami Heat. The Sixers closed the season with a win at Miami.

NBA

Fantasy basketball: Finding next year's NBA studs

Before we put the 2013-14 fantasy basketball season to bed, it’s worth thinking about next year’s breakouts while they’re fresh in our mind.

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.

Wellbeing

Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.

Travel

Earth Day travel in the Florida Keys

See why this eco-friendly destination deserves your attention.

Tech

Sorry, Facebook — FarmVille goes mobile with 'Country…

Zynga has released a version of the hit "FarmVille" tailored for smartphones and tablets in the hope of reaping a bumper crop of players.