Deron Williams on Monday told New York media that Jerry Sloan's offense in Utah fit his style of play better, and that, in part, explains the All-Star point guards drop in productivity since the Jazz traded him in February 2011.
"I've really had injuries I've been dealing with the whole time," Williams told the New York Daily News. "I didn't have the talent around me I did there. Their system was a great system for my style of play. I am a system player. I loved coach (Jerry) Sloan's system there, I loved the offense there."
Williams, the No. 3 pick in the 2005 draft, has largely been vilified among Jazz for his role in the sudden retirement of Sloan.
The Utah motion offense was conduce to Williams' style of play, he said, while he has struggled in a largely isolation-based set of plays with the Nets, coached by former NBA point guard Avery Johnson.
“Is it as good as there [in Utah]?" Williams said to the New York Times. "No."
Williams signed a five year, $98 million contract with the Nets in the summer. The Jazz traded him to the franchise then based in New Jersey due to a bellief that he would not resign with Utah when his contract expired.
"I understand what they were doing," Williams said. "It was smart on their part, because there was a possibility that I wouldn't have come back."
This season, Williams is just below his career averages in the three major categories, averaging 17 points, 8.3 assists and 3 rebounds per game.
For as much as Williams' comments were an endorsemet of the system of a now-retired coach who often watches games from the middle of the lower bowl at EnergySolutions Arena, Williams could be ready as being equally damning of Johnson.
"I grew up in high school, my coach wasn't one of those guys who would just throw out the ball and let us play," Williams said. "We were a system team. We had a staple of plays that we relied on. We were good at execution. In college (at Illinois), we ran the motion offense. A lot of cutting, a lot passing, a lot of screening, a lot of extra passes. I'm used to just movement. So I'm still trying to adjust. It's been an adjustment for me."
— Bill Oram