Deron Williams had ankle issues before the season started. It just didn’t cost him any games until now.
The Nets announced Williams will miss tonight’s game at Indiana and Wednesday’s home game against Denver with synovitis, which is inflammation of ankle joint linings. Williams received platelet rich treatment on both ankles earlier today and is expected to miss just the two games.
Since these are the last two games before the All-Star break, the Nets said Williams is expected back for next Tuesday’s home game with Milwaukee. That will give him nine days between full contact and full-speed game action.
“We just felt this is probably the best time to give him off because he’s not going to have a full week in the second half of the season,” general manager Billy King told reporters before last night’s game.
Before the season opener, a MRI show that Williams had bone spurs in his left ankle. General manager Billy King told reporters that he thought Williams would likely have to undergo offseason surgery, but that the issue would be manageable.
The Nets have managed the ankle by having him sit out practices, but the injury may also been caused by increased activity. During the lockout last season, he played in Turkey and then did not get much rest playing the 2012 Olympics this past offseason.
Williams has played in 50 games this year. The only game he missed was Dec. 26 in Milwaukee due to a wrist injury, which coincidentally was the last game for former head coach Avery Johnson.
In that game, C.J. Watson and Keith Bogans were Brooklyn’s starting guards while Joe Johnson slid over to starting forward. The Nets dropped to 14-14 with a 108-93 loss and fired Johnson the next day.
The Nets have won 15 of 23 games since replacing Johnson with P.J. Carlesimo on an interim basis but also have dropped six of their last nine games starting with a blowout loss in Memphis and continuing with Sunday’s 111-86 loss to San Antonio.
“Bad habits creep in,” Williams said. “It’s tough to break them. If we want to be a good team, we have to play better. If they go on a run, we have to try to get some stops, try to break that chain. … It’s almost like we have two different teams and you are guessing which one is going to show up on that given night.”
Williams is averaging 15.7 points and 6.7 assists in that period while shooting 45.5 percent. However, on shots between five to nine feet, Williams is shooting 36.4 percent (4-of-11) in that span, which may suggest an ankle issue while penetrating to the basket.
“He hasn’t had the same explosiveness that he had last year, so obviously there’s something’s affecting him,” King said.
Overall he is averaging 16.7 points and 7.6 assists per game while shooting 41.8 percent. In his first full season with the Nets in 2011-12, Williams averaged 21 points and 8.7 assists per game on 40.7 shooting while missing 11 games
Follow Nets beat writer Larry Fleisher on Twitter @LarryFleisher.