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Average Fantasy Points are determined when Deron Williams was active vs. non-active during the season. Click here to view average fantasy points for a different time period.
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
Williams bottomed out in 2014-15, his final year with the Nets, looking like a mere shell of his former perennial All-Star self. Of course, that decline began a couple of years earlier, but Williams' per-game averages sunk to near-career-low levels, while his shooting efficiency waned to below 40 percent from the field. Though his 2015-16 campaign wasn't exactly a bounce-back year, Williams turned in a respectable first season with the Mavericks, averaging 14.1 points, 5.8 assists and 2.9 rebounds per game to go with 41.4 percent shooting from the floor and 34.4 percent shooting from three-point range. Injuries limited Williams to 65 games, marking the third consecutive season in which he’s missed at least 14 contests. Most notably, a sports hernia robbed Williams of eight games late in the regular season, and the ailment lingered into the playoffs, where the visibly hampered point guard suited up for only three of the Mavs' five first-round games against the Thunder. As he enters his age-32 season, Williams' best days are firmly in the rear-view mirror. However, after re-signing with the Mavs on a one-year deal, he's again set to serve as the primary point guard, which should yield similar statistics to last season, making him worthy of a mid- or late-round selection in most leagues. J.J. Barea and Devin Harris loom as other capable options off the bench, but the Mavs, a franchise always intent on making the playoffs, are mostly devoid of any high-upside floor generals who could possibly encroach on Williams' role.
Once considered a top point guard in the league, Williams' 2014-15 campaign was his worst season since his rookie year. In 31 minutes per game, the former All-Star averaged 13.0 points, 6.6 assists, and 3.5 rebounds while shooting a career-low 39 percent from the field and 37 percent from three-point range. He negotiated a buyout with Brooklyn in the offseason and returned to his hometown Mavericks, looking to ressurect a once promising career. The situation in Dallas sets up nicely for Williams as he will have plenty of offensive weapons at his disposal, and coach Rick Carlisle's motion offense can be very fanasty friendly. Despite a rib injury that limited him to 68 games played, he does appear to have turned a corner health wise, as his previously problematic ankles were a non-issue last season. If he continues this trend, Williams could be in line to bounce back statistically and reestablish himself as an elite level point guard.
For the second straight season, Williams' ailing ankles received more publicity than his on-court performance. He was limited to just 64 games and had easily his least productive season since his rookie year in 2005-06. In 32 minutes per game, Williams averaged 14.3 points, 6.1 assists, and 2.6 rebounds while shooting 45 percent from the field and 37 percent from three-point range. While many teams would be thrilled with that kind of production at the point guard spot, it's easy to remember just how much better Williams has been in the past. Only three seasons ago, he averaged 21.0 points, 8.7 assists, and 3.3 rebounds and made a legitimate case for the title of "best point guard in the league." Still only 30 years old, Williams remains an elite talent, but his health will ultimately decide how productive he can be. Offseason surgery in May to remove bone spurs from both ankles should help, but he's a difficult player to trust given his recent injury history. Regardless, Williams is expected to be at full strength for the start of training camp and will open the season as Brooklyn's starting point guard. Assuming he's able to stay healthy, he should see near his career average of 36 minutes per game.
Hampered by leg injuries and an isolation-heavy offense he clearly hated, Williams got off to a very slow start last season. But he played through the pain – appearing in 78 games – and rebounded in the second half to post numbers in line with his career averages (18.9 points, 7.7 assists, 3.0 rebounds, 1.0 steals, 44 percent FG). This year, he'll be expected to carry a much deeper team to the top of the Eastern Conference – and possibly beyond. With the additions of Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, Jason Terry and Andrei Kirilenko to a solid core of Williams, Joe Johnson and Brook Lopez, the Nets basically have two potential starters at every position except point guard, which will give D-Will no end of targets for his passes. And with another elite point guard – rookie head coach Jason Kidd – calling the shots, the Nets should be expected to run an offense that will feature much more ball movement than what they ran last season. Of course, with so many options on offense, Williams may not be asked to score quite as much. But any decrease in scoring could easily be offset by a boost in assists.
Deron Williams went through much of last season as the Nets' only real offensive threat, and had a major free-agent decision hanging over his head. Despite all the distractions, he turned in his usual excellent season, averaging over 21 points and just under nine assists, while shooting very good percentages from the floor and line. This season, his supporting cast got a major upgrade. Joe Johnson joined the team via trade and Gerald Wallace, Brook Lopez, and Kris Humphries re-signed with the team. Lopez (foot) should be healthy after limping through the five games he was able to play in last season. That might mean a slight dip in scoring for Williams, but don't be surprised if his assist totals make up the difference.
In the last year alone, Deron Williams has (allegedly) contributed to the ouster of American pro sports' longest-tenured head coach, been the centerpiece of a surprise trade, fought through a series of nagging injuries, and become the biggest NBA star to sign a contract overseas. What can the guy do for an encore? Williams' new team has never seen what its prize acquisition can do when 100 percent healthy; Williams was plagued by hand and wrist problems for his entire tenure in New Jersey. April surgery corrected the problem, and Williams should be at full strength when the season begins. In the interim, he plans to suit up for Besiktas of the Turkish league -- the same team that signed Allen Iverson to a deal last season. D-Will should thrive in Newark and rack up very healthy assist totals setting up Brook Lopez for short jumpers. The biggest question at this point is whether or not his pending free agency will impact his play. Will he explode for career-best numbers as part of his contract drive, or will the pressure hurt his performance -- and by extension, his stats?
Williams has never equaled draft-mate Chris Paul's fantasy numbers… but the comparison is a lot closer than many think. Last season, Williams averaged 18.7 points and 10.5 dimes and set new career-best marks with 4.0 boards and 1.3 steals per game – despite playing through a laundry list of injuries. After passing on an invite to play in the World Championships and taking the summer to get healthy, it should be safe to pencil Williams in for similar numbers this season. One caveat, which could prove to be important – after several seasons as one of the league's most stable franchises, the Utah roster has already seen major changes. Carlos Boozer – Williams' pick-and-roll partner – is gone, as are Wes Matthews, and Kyle Korver. And Andrei Kirilenko – he of the $17 million expiring contract – could be gone soon. In their places are big Al Jefferson, rookie Gordon Hayward and defensive specialist Raja Bell. The amount of time the new arrivals need to absorb Jerry Sloan's intricate offense could have an impact on Williams' numbers this season.
Chris Paul is the top point guard in fantasy, no question. But the drop-off between Paul and Deron Williams isn’t as large as you might think. Last season, Williams came within six tenths of a point on his scoring average from posting a 20-and-10 season in points and assists. Williams doesn’t compare as well in boards or steals, averaging 2.9 and 1.1 to Paul’s 5.5 and 2.8, respectively. Williams’ shooting percentage dropped a bit last season, from .507 to a still-healthy .471 from the floor, but that might be attributed to his struggles to regain form after missing time with an October ankle injury. Between the ankle and some other minor bumps and bruises he played in 68 total games in 2008-09. None of last season’s injuries should have any effect on his play in the coming year. Williams’ value also gets a boost from the Jazz’ decision to hold on to Carlos Boozer – at least, for the time being. Boozer is an ideal pick-and-roll partner to Williams, and should be on the receiving end of quite a few assists, at least until the trade deadline.
Williams has become one of the premier point guards in the league over the last two seasons, and that earned him a four-year deal in the offseason. Like Chris Paul, he has a great sense of the court and gets the ball to his teammates in ideal spots. Williams has averaged 9.9 assists per game the last two seasons. The Jazz were second in field-goal percentage and fifth in scoring last year despite taking just 80 shots per game. Needless to say, Williams runs coach Jerry Sloan’s half-court offense well. The Jazz give Williams weapons all over the court, starting with Carlos Boozer working in the post and Mehmet Okur who scores out to 3-point distance. Along with Okur, Kyle Korver provides a perimeter spacing threat, allowing Williams to penetrate. Williams uses his strength to post up, handles contact well, gets to the free-throw line (5.0 FTA/game last year) and knocks down 3-pointers (37.4%) – he’s the complete package offensively. Williams has also been very durable, missing just four games in three NBA seasons.
We noticed Williams’ impressive finish to his rookie season. We waited with anticipation to see what he might do for the Jazz in his sophomore season. We were blown away. While playing just eight more minutes per game than in his rookie season, Williams more than doubled his assists per game and increased his scoring by 5.5 points. He’s a good shooter and passer and more importantly, he’s a leader. Williams is good in the pick-and-roll, a Utah staple under coach Jerry Sloan, and works it to perfection with Carlos Boozer. Boozer and Mehmet Okur give Williams offensive threats that know how to finish. The downside, if you can call it that, is Williams doesn’t get to the line as much as other points do, though he’s big enough to absorb contact and get his shot off. He did improve his free-throw shooting last season, but is still below par relative to others at his position.
It took most of last season for Deron Williams to convince Jerry Sloan that he deserved to run the Utah Jazz. (I can’t imagine why Sloan would have such high standards for his point guards. Oh, wait… he’s probably spoiled from about 34 years of John Stockton.) Williams averaged just 19 minutes per game in January, but by April his all-around solid play moved the needle to over 35 minutes, and earned him a spot on the All-Rookie Team. As the incumbent starter heading into this season, look for across-the-board improvement from Williams this year.
Rookie point guards are hard to recommend, but Williams is falling into an excellent situation in Utah. He’s playing for an excellent coach in a point guard-friendly system. He’s away from high-pressure media markets. He has, in Andrei Kirilenko, a superstar teammate who will draw defensive attention. Oh, and Utah hasn’t had a competent point guard since that Stockton guy retired. Williams averaged around 12 points and seven assists for Illinois NCAA runner-up squad last season; those totals don’t seem like an unreasonable expectation in his rookie year.
More Fantasy News
Will play in Game 4
Misses shootaround, expected to play Tuesday
Williams missed morning shootaround due to an illness but should be considered probable for Tuesday's Game 4 matchup against the Celtics.
Shines in spot start Monday
Williams scored 35 points (14-25 FG, 5-9 3Pt, 2-4 FT) with nine assists, seven rebounds, one steal and one block across 46 minutes in Monday's 124-121 overtime loss to the Heat.
Will start at point guard Monday
Leads bench with 19 in loss
Williams posted 19 points (8-10 FG, 2-4 3Pt, 1-1 FT), four rebounds, two assists and one blocked shot over 20 minutes in Wednesday's 126-113 loss to the Nuggets.