Nets’ Johnson: Williams Trade Was In ‘Back Pocket’
NEW YORK (WFAN/AP) – Nets head coach Avery Johnson joined WFAN’s Boomer & Carton Thursday morning to break down New Jersey’s trade for Deron Williams, a deal that Johnson described as being “in our back pocket.”
The Jazz surprisingly sent their point guard to New Jersey, which stole some attention from the neighboring Knicks on Wednesday with Carmelo Anthony making his New York debut.
“We know with this social media, if we would have told the world, then maybe ten other teams would have been calling Utah trying to knock us out of that deal,” Johnson said. “We just kept it under wraps. We had it in our back pocket.”
The Jazz were a perennial contender with Williams, but his reputation took a hit when Hall of Fame coach Jerry Sloan retired one day after clashing with him during a game.
“First of all, I don’t necessarily know that they wanted to get rid of him,” said Johnson. “Billy King decided to call and just investigate. And as he investigated it, we put together a deal that they thought was a pretty good looking deal.”
The Nets hope Williams will sign a contract extension, which they can offer this summer. If so, he would become the face of their franchise when they move to Brooklyn in 2012.
“We feel really good about Deron now and in the future, and that’s why we made this deal,” he said. “We’re not going to let anything muddle the waters or our celebration today about him supposedly leaving us in a year and a half.”
Will Deron sign the extension to keep him with the Nets, or will he bolt for the Knicks? Sound off in the comments below!
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