Learning To Love Mavs' Deron Williams (Again)
I'm curious as to the general sentiment of Dallas Mavericks' fans regarding Deron Williams over the last five years. Really, it's an intriguing subject.
The boards at DallasBasketball.com are alight with optimism regarding the oft-injured point guard who is coming off one of the worst years of career. Why, you ask?
When I sit and think about it, I can't really think of any reason that the Mavericks' faithful would have to HATE him (aside from, you know, choosing Brooklyn over Dallas). Because that worked out so well.
If anything, Dallas fans in 2012 were irked at Cuban for filming Shark Tank instead of meeting with Williams and Co., but, with this being the internet, let's stretch the bounds of normalcy and delve into the deep sea of speculation. It's what we do.
It's the summer of 2012. The glow from the Mavericks' championship run has started to finally wear off and any immediate hopes of future PG success rest on Deron's shoulders ... but he just got maxed by Brooklyn for the next five years. What are the Mavericks to do now? (The next day after Williams announced he was headed to Brooklyn, Jason Kidd reneged on a verbal agreement with Dallas and signed a three-year deal with the Knicks).
It's hard to hate Williams personally for this decision because, you know, $98 million is a lot of money. We'd all probably make the same decision if presented with it too, and the opportunity to be a top dog on an NBA team.
Now comes that whole normalcy-stretching thing. Seriously, Deron? You want Brooklyn over Dallas? YOU'RE FROM THE COLONY! Who wouldn't want to play for their hometown team? How much of this hate is exacerbated by Kidd's snub?
What stings even more is that Deron was allegedly "leaning" towards Dallas when Joe Johnson's move to Brooklyn from Atlanta changed the PG's mind. (When the Mavs calculated that it would do just the opposite, giving Deron way to much credit.)
Joe Johnson? Wow. There's a guy named Dirk Nowitzki who has a slightly better resume here in Dallas and is one year removed from a glorious title run. Geez, Deron. I HATE YOU!
Pause. As much as I try, I can't generate any hate, fake or otherwise, towards this guy for the whole thing. It's not like he DeAndre Jordan'd the 2012 Mavericks (even though Kidd kind of did). Mild annoyance and disappointment are the best I can come up with.
So, let's run with that. Let's say you were a mildly annoyed and disappointed Mavericks' fan who witnessed the chance to have a (at the time) top-3 point guard running the show. It's 2015 now and Brooklyn basically just paid Williams to leave, and paid him A LOT.
Dallas then got Deron this summer on the cheap (two years, $11 million ... or, one year, really) and he has the opportunity to be one of the more improbable of the Mavericks' reclamation projects with huge rewards for all involved. The two sides need each other. Dallas needs a point guard. Williams needs image rehab after his falling out with Utah and now Brooklyn. It's a win-win!
We now love Deron Williams because maybe we should've never hated him in the first place and now, Dallas stands to gain from what has transpired over the last three years. Everyone's all good! Yes, A win-win. Unless, of course, Deron's Mavs don't actually ... win.
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