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Keeping Williams Makes Nets Matter?
Posted By HOOPSWORLD On July 4, 2012 @ 6:47 am In All,Headlines,NBA Headlines | No Comments
It was a different NBA world in February 2011, just 17 months ago, when the Nets took a chance on Deron Williams. This was the end of a time in basketball that would produce a transformative five-month lockout. The Nets were lining up at the buffet table to get theirs.
Except there were no guarantees. Nobody knew what the world would look like on the other side of that lockout. Nobody knew what Williams, a Texas boy, would think of New York City — and Brooklyn, in particular. All the Nets’ brass of Billy King and Bobby Marks knew was that their team was taking a step out of purgatory in Newark, N.J., and landing in Brooklyn in a year-and-a-half or so — and that they’d better bring a basketball team with them that somebody wanted to watch.
Now, the Nets matter. The Brooklyn Nets matter after Williams resisted the urge to take Mark Cuban’s money and knack for building a champion and return to his home state of Texas to chase rings with Dirk Nowitzki. In this case — and possibly, only this case, forever — Cuban’s money wasn’t enough. The very rules Cuban fought so hard for during the lockout meant that he could offer one less year and about 24 million fewer dollars than his archenemy, Mikhail Prokhorov, for Williams.
As it turned out, there was no need for a kickboxing match between Cuban and Prokhorov, after the Russian billionaire had jokingly threatened to “crush” Cuban in such a duel during an April news conference at the Barclays Center.
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