We already know how the Jazz’s end of the Deron Williams went down — they decided he wasn’t necessarily a franchise player so they moved him quickly, getting a pretty nice haul for a franchise point guard. It was quick, unexpected and really impressive.
But like any good story, it wouldn’t be complete without the beginning. Luckily, this one’s got a start that’s just as interesting as the rest of the tale. After teasing the story on The Morning Jones, Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports revealed today just how these trade talks started.
[Nets GM Billy] King and assistant GM Bobby Marks had concocted hundreds of multiteam trade possibilities on the walls, forever searching for a scenario in which talks between the New York Knicks and Denver Nuggets fell apart and the Nets could undercut the Knicks for [Carmelo] Anthony. When the Knicks finally cut a deal with the Nuggets, it wouldn’t be long until one of King’s closest league friends, Utah Jazz GM Kevin O’Connor, called with condolences on losing out with ‘Melo.
Well, they started to talk about deals. Andrei Kirilenko? Devin Harris? They tossed out possibilities but nothing fit. And then King raised Williams’ name with a laugh, and O’Connor didn’t dismiss the idea. Soon, they were talking seriously. Within 24 hours, New Jersey had a transformational point guard on the grease board and the floor and – ultimately, the Nets hope – on the recruiting trail.
Just to make everything crystal clear: Deron Williams became a Net because New Jersey lost out on Carmelo Anthony, which led one of King’s friends — a guy who just so happens to be part of a team that had decided that their best player in a decade was expendable — calling to say he was sorry, which in turn resulted in the two decision-makers batting around trade ideas with Williams name coming up as a joke.
Now, the Nets plan on using that incredibly lucky sequence of events to begin their “recruitment” of Dwight Howard which could completely shake up the Eastern Conference in two years. Basically, the Nets began completely revamping their future by failing at what had been their main objective for months. The NBA is awesome.