“I’m going to push him. I want the best for him,” Kidd said after
signing autographs at the Nets’ merchandise store in Coney Island. “When
we sit down and talk about goals, team goals and also individual goals,
I’m going to push him and I want to get him back to double-digit
Williams hasn’t averaged at least 10 assists since 2010-11, which
represented the fourth straight season he eclipsed that mark. Last
season’s 7.7 assists per game was Williams’ lowest output since he was a
rookie. And as the assist numbers dipped in the last two seasons, so
did Williams’ shooting percentage.
As mentioned above, Williams hasn't averaged double digit assists for a couple of years. Last season, he was 5th in the league in assists per game with 7.7, behind Rondo (11.1), Chris Paul (9.7), Greivis Vasquez (9.0), and Jrue Holiday (8.0). The previous year he was also 5th in the league with 8.7 assists per game behind (guess who... the King of Dimes of course) Rajon Rondo (11.7), Steve Nash (10.7), Chris Paul (9.1), and Jose Calderon (8.8).
Having Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce by his side definitely helped Rajon Rondo during his assist streak last season, so you would think they could only help Deron Williams reach his goals. But the New York Daily News seems to think the two former Celtics will hinder Williams' play rather than help it:
Kidd’s goal before the Nets traded for Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce
was to push the tempo and play to the point guard’s strengths as a
spontaneous creator in the open court.
Acquiring two aging and slowing starters from Boston complicates that plan, but Kidd insisted Williams will still run.
“You don’t want to take away from Deron’s freedom and creativity of
putting pressure on the defense,” Kidd said. “And I thought he did a
great job of that in the second half of last season. When he lost the
weight, physically he felt better. His strength is when he’s in the open
court. So we’ll definitely talk about that on the daily, about him
making things happen without having to set the ball up.”
The Brooklyn Nets website has a poll up on whether fans think Williams will reach Jason Kidd's assist goals for the season. Currently, 43% feel as though Wiliams will average 7-9 assists per game, 36% think that he will average 11+ assists per game, and 21% say he will average and even 10.
Do you think Deron Williams will have a Rondo-like year this season and average 10 assists per game? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.