Williams Returns To Professional Basketball

Just a week after signing with the Austin Toros of the NBA Development League, former Duke star Jason Williams made his debut in what he hopes will be a stepping stone back to the big time.

Despite recently joining the team, Jay Williams started the game against the Dakota Wizards and played just under 42 minutes. In that time he scored 14 points, grabbed five rebounds, and logged a team high nine assists.

However, the return to competitive basketball after a long layoff was visible as he shot just 5-of-16 from the floor and committed a staggering 11 turnovers. Still, Williams was incredibly upbeat after his return to professional basketball's regular season.

"I thought I played OK," said Williams "It's getting back into the grove of the game that is going to take me a bit, but I'm ready for it."

Williams and the Toros will return to action against the Wizards on Friday night in Bismark as they look for the team's first victory on the season.

After missing more than two years with an injury sustained in a motorcycle accident, Williams earned an invitation to training camp with the New Jersey Nets. Unfortunately he was cut. Soon after he returned to Duke to workout with associate head coach Johnny Dawkins along with members of the current Blue Devil roster.

After weighing offers from teams throughout Europe, Williams decided to sign with the Toros in hopes of returning to the NBA soon.

"Playing in the D-League will provide me with the best chance to learn where I am as a player right now," he said. "It makes the most sense for me to play within the D-League rules and regulations, basically the same style of play as the NBA."

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