Holy smokes! Did Utah really just start this 4 game road trip with a blow out win against potential Eastern Conference Playoff team Chicago?
Yeah, that just happened. Utah smoke Chicago in their house 132-108, keyed by a 40 point fourth quarter that showed the nation that Deron Williams is the most underrated player in the league, not just Point Guard, I’m talking player.
We could talk about this game more, like how Boozer played some defense on Brad Miller and dropped 16 and 10 while CJ Miles stepped up off the bench with 6 3pointers and 26 points in only 18 minutes, those were big minutes people.
However, Deron Williams is who I really want to talk about. How good is this kid, in his 5th season out of Illinois who hasn’t played in an All Star game until this Season. What! It took til his 5th Season for him to get an All Star nod?
Kobe Bryant, Lebron James, Kevin Durant, Dwayne Wade, Deron Williams, Dwight Howard, Chris Paul, Carmelo Anthony, Danny Granger, Pau Gasol
My top 10 players in the league, in that order, Deron Williams comes in at 5th on this list.
Think I’m crazy? Really look at it. If you’re starting a team, who do you want, Deron Williams or Dwight Howard? That’s debatable I guess, but in today’s league I take a top notch Point Guard, with so many elite Points Guards in the league, you almost can’t win without one. Chris Paul is electric, but health is starting to become a problem. Carmelo is one of the best scorers in the league but maturity has held back his development as a player and a leader on the team. It took Chauncey Billups arrival for Melo to start playing defense.
Not who I want for the face of my franchise.
The only players I take over Deron Williams are Kobe, Lebron, Wade, and Durant, nobody else, nobody.
Well what does that mean? It means that I have Deron Williams as the 5th best player in the league.
Over the past 3 years he’s averaged 18 and 10.5 Assists. Solid. Only Nash and Paul are better in that span.
I know alot of people probably think I’m crazy to take Deron Williams over Chris Paul. After the 2008 Season Chris Paul was considered a league MVP candidate. Yeah he’s good when he plays, he’s electric. Don’t get me wrong I love Chris Paul, but I still take Deron Williams over him for one simple reason.
Since Paul and Williams came into the league together in 2005 they’ve played 4 full seasons. During that span Williams has played 80 games or more 3 times, Paul only once. Chris Pauls style of play calls for alot of penetration, alot of banging with bigger bodies, and with his frame he’s much more of an injury risk than Williams, whose size allows him to play physical while at the same time remaining healthy.
If your best player doesn’t play, what good is he?
Deron Williams has suffered only one major injury in his career thus far, a sprained ankle that took half of last season to get better.
The fact that Deron Williams gets no love just shows you how much talent has little to do with how much attention you get in the league and why alot of players when given the choice would rather play in a larger market then what Utah has to offer.
Just imagine how popular he would be if he played for a bigger market like Chicago, his hometown of Dallas, LA or even New York. He would be one of the most popular players in the league. I can promise you one thing, it wouldn’t have taken until this season for Williams to get into the All Star game.
A bigger market would mean more Jersey sales, more endorsements, a shoe deal maybe and alot more attention.
He won’t say it but those things are all important to him. You can see how frustrated Williams was the past two Seasons when he didn’t make the All Star team. You can see Deron walks around with a chip on his shoulder, when guys like Rajon Rondo, Derrick Rose, Jameer Nelson, and Tony Parker get mentioned as the best PG’s in the league and Deron was left out of the conversation for a long time.
Now he is finally starting to get the love he deserves, Charles Barkely recently said that Williams is the best Point Guard in the league and I completely agree with him.
For Utah fans however, it might be a bit too late.
Nobody really talked about it but after the Ronnie Brewer trade, Williams wasn’t shy about voicing his displeasure with the move that was done basically for Salary Cap purposes. Utah received a 1st round pick next year in the deal and about 3 million in salary, a 6 million dollar saving when you take the Luxary Tax in account.
Williams was upset that other teams in the West made moves to get better at the deadline while Utah got essentially worse. Good thing Utah is still winning or you the situation might have been worse.
Williams even said that moves like this are why he signed a 3 year deal instead of the 5 year max. For Utah fans the prospect of losing Deron Williams to Free Agency has to be a scary thought but I’m telling you people, its a reality.
If Utah doesn’t have any success in the Playoffs this Season or next you can basically say good bye to D-Will because he won’t be sticking around after the 2011 Season.
Everyone is talking about Boozer leaving after this season but I would be more concerned with Williams leaving for greener pastures.
Bottom line, D-Will is one of the best players in the league, everyone is finally starting to recognize that fact, and as his reputation as the best Point Guard in the league grows, so will the market for his services. Alot more than the NBA Championship are riding on this year’s Postseason, Deron’s future in Utah is also tied Utah’s success.
One thing Utah does have going for them is the fact that they have 3 First round picks next year, theirs, Memphis’s and New Yorks. That’s huge becuase New York is likely a lottery team, meaning Utah could potentially have the number one overall pick next season in what should be considered a pretty good draft class, including Demarcus Cousins and John Wall.
Even if Utah does go far in the Playoffs and have a great draft this Offseason, I personally don’t think it will be enough.
In 2012 Deron Williams will no longer be with the Utah Jazz. Prediction Alert!!!! Deron Williams will be a Maverick in 2012. Bam!!!!
Does that blow your mind?
Think about it, its his hometown, he played his first All Star game this season in Dallas and loved it, and its a huge market. The perfect place for his Star to grow. Jason Kidd has maybe one more decent season before he retires and if Dallas wants to remain competitive they need to get an Elite Point Guard. Mark Cuban is a hands on owner, much like the late Larry Miller, and he isn’t shy about spending money if he thinks it will help his team win.
Deron and Dirk on the same team would be electric. Utah fans better start praying if they don’t want that pairing to happen.
Unless I’m wrong, and I’m never wrong, Utah’s future could be darker than its been since Malone and Stockton retired.
Danny Shapiro is the NBA Director of Content for www.prosportsblogging.com as well as the Utah Jazz blogger. Danny has lived in Utah for over a decade, he actually moved to Utah during the 97 Season when the Jazz faced Jordan and the Bulls in the Finals. Danny also contributes to the Fantasy Sports department and is known by many as the best Fantasy Sports Managers in the World. Danny is passionate about all sports and sharing that passion with others. If you have any sports/fantasy related questions Danny can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can follow him on Twitter DanShap@twitter.com
About the Author
Written by Danny Shapiro
Danny Shapiro is 26 years old, married and a father to 2 boys, who he hopes one day to play MLB and support him and his wife in their old age. Danny's second love, mistress even, is sports and Danny is living his dream of being a sports writer right now, thanks to Prosportsblogging.com.