March 5, 2012 by staff
Deron Williams, Deron Williams really wanted to make his tee time Monday morning in Miami. Knowing coach Avery Johnson would be giving his team the day off if they won, Williams took matters into his own hands and scored a franchise-record 57 points to lead the New Jersey Nets to a 104-101 victory Sunday night over the Charlotte Bobcats.
“I had an 11:39 tee time, so I had to make sure I’d make that,” said Williams, an avid golfer. “So I wanted to contribute.”
The Nets needed just about every point they could get from Williams to fend off the pesky Bobcats, who led by as many as 16 in the first half.
“The first half was pretty pitiful,” Williams said.
Williams had 17 points in the first half before erupting for 22 in the third quarter to help the Nets battle back from an eight-point halftime deficit and take the lead. He added 18 points in the fourth quarter, including a pivotal shot late in the game to give the Nets a four-point lead.
Johnson called Williams’ effort unbelievable.
“He really was focused,” Johnson said. “He was well-rested. He made a lot of shots yesterday in our mini-practice and it carried over into tonight’s game. We were going back and forth on whether to have a shootaround this morning and we opted for rest. And he was pretty fresh.”
Williams’ eyes grew a little wider when he realized early on that the Bobcats weren’t double-teaming him off pick and rolls.
It’s something he hadn’t seen all season.
“I’m used to getting double-teamed on those,” Williams said. “It’s kind of refreshing not to be.”
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