The writing started to be on the wall for Nets coach Avery Johnson the minute star point guard Deron Williams blamed the coach and the system on his poor play this season.
Deron Williams is the guy that complains to a high-priced restaurant about the waiter he has, and then when he comes in the next week, is surprised to see that the guy was fired.
Williams told the New York Daily News that he was shocked and surprise to year Johnson was fired yesterday.
“I was surprised,” Williams said in a telephone interview with Daily News. “I never had any conversation with (GM) Billy King about not liking Coach, nothing about Coach Johnson. Avery was a big reason I came back, because of him and Billy. So I was surprised.
“We’ve never had an argument, we’ve never had a fight, any disagreements, anything. So, I think it was more kind of what happened in Utah, people still saying I got Coach Sloan fired even though he resigned and that’s going to stick with me for a while.”
Deron Williams is quick to point out that the day after making those critical comments about Johnson, he went in and had a conversation with him.
“The next day I went in and talked to Coach Johnson and made sure he knew that I didn’t mean anything by it, and he was like, ‘No worries, I haven’t even thought about it,’ ” Williams said.
Williams wants you to know he had no problem with Johnson, and he’s the reason he resigned.
“I definitely don’t think the losing is coach’s fault. I have to play better,” Williams said. “I have to figure out how to balance. When I said the comments that our offense was heavy on isolation plays, that’s a lot of our guys’ games. That’s a lot of Joe (Johnson’s) game. That’s how he’s coachable.
“So a lot of times I’m going to be sitting in a corner and watching him work, and that’s fine. And Brook (Lopez) needs the ball on the block. I don’t have the ball in my hands as much as I’m accustomed to. I’m still trying to figure out how to get going, get my offense going off of that. Is it Coach Johnson’s fault I’m missing wide-open shots? No. That was never his fault. That’s on me. I have to play better. So I never said or thought it’s his fault we were losing.”