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The only person stopping Deron Williams seems to be Deron Williams

Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Deron Williams made a statement on Saturday. His game-high 24 points (tied with Joe Johnson) propelled the Nets to a first half lead and paced the Nets to victory. He thoroughly outplayed Kyle Lowry, who was making his first postseason start, and proved that in the Williams-Lowry matchup, Lowry shouldn't be the overwhelming favorite.

The Raptor PG noticed a difference in his rival's play...

On Sunday, Kevin Garnett publicly praised the veteran guard who has fallen from his elite status in the league. "Deron's biggest problem has been Deron. He's very, very hard on himself, to the point where you have to pull him to the side and give him some real s--t, say some real s--t to him," Garnett said. "When he comes out of that, he's very hard, very, very hard to guard, very difficult to deal with, and we need him to be like that.

Garnett also preached that this is Williams' team, no matter how much he speaks.  "But most importantly, man, I think he's starting to just relax and kind of consolidate the responsibilities around here," Garnett said. "We've taken some of the grit off of him, so he doesn't have to be so talkative, but understanding that we're following you, so how you go is how we're going to go, and I think he's getting more comfortable with that position."