A veiled critique here, an implied slight there. For the first time since he was bought out and stretched by the Nets a month ago, Deron Williams has spoken out ... in an interview with the Mavs' official website Wednesday.
Williams, who never publicly thanked fans or anyone else for that matter in Brooklyn, spoke glowingly of the organization he's joined in Dallas, one that will pay him $11 million over the next two years, on top of the $27.5 million buyout he got from the Nets. But within those comments were echoes of some long-held critiques of the organization he left.
"I mean, I’m definitely excited about that. You know, there’s definitely a stability about this organization that’s definitely intriguing. You know, they have guys that have been here forever, so it’s just about plugging in the new pieces — myself included — and just trying to get to work. But, you know, I’m just excited about this opportunity, and I’m ready to get the season going."
During last year's training camp, Williams on more than one occasion noted that Lionel Hollins was his fourth coach in four years, citing the lack of stability as an issue for the team, having to adjust to a new leader, a new philosophy.
Williams had his worst season since his rookie year with Utah. Virtually every statistical category hit a new low. The Mavs site, however, described it this way: "his production [took] a slight dip last season."
Williams also spoke about getting a fresh start ... after what everyone agreed was a tough time in New York, and ultimately with Hollins. Stefan Bondy reported -- and no one ever issued an outright denial -- that Williams had to be physically restrained from going after his coach.
"Just getting started, man. A fresh start is what I’m most excited about. You know, playing with this group of guys, I feel like we have a great group of guys here, and so (I’m looking forward to) just getting everybody healthy and getting on the court with them."
Williams also credited the Mavs with helping him resettle in Dallas, his hometown.
- Deron Williams looks forward to fresh start with Mavericks - Mitch Abramson - New York Daily News
- Deron Williams: Dirk can play until he's 50 the way he shoots the basketball - Dallas Morning News
Deron Williams excited for fresh start in Dallas- Kurt Helin - NBC Sports