Deron Williams‘ time as a member of the Utah Jazz was memorable as he became one of the best point guards in the NBA out west. The way he left town, not as memorable. Or at least, it was an exit that D-Will would probably like to forget.
During the 2010-11 season, D-Will and Jerry Sloan, the Jazz’s coach for 23 years, were becoming increasingly hostile toward each other. According to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports, things got so bad one night in Utah that the two nearly fought each other. Eventually Sloan requested a meeting with ownership that Deron forced his way into. Soon after that, Sloan felt like he’d had enough and quit the team.
The Jazz, likely upset that they couldn’t keep their long-time coach from quitting, traded Williams to the Nets just a few days later on Feb. 23, 2011 in a deal that sent Derrick Favors, Devin Harris and two first round picks to the Jazz.
In the years since that deal, D-Will has made it no secret that he didn’t want to be traded at the time. He was upset about it and wanted to get back at them on the court. Unfortunately, in D-Will’s first four attempts to beat the Jazz, they were the ones that came out victorious. Finally, on Tuesday the Nets were successful as they beat the Jazz 104-88 at the Barclays Center.
“It’s good to finally beat them,” Williams said. “It’s a rebuilding year for them, but I’m definitely happy to beat them.”
Williams, even though he has been limited with an ankle injury, still managed to play a big role in the win. He had 10 points and eight assists with a pair of steals in 24 minutes. The Nets dominated when he was on the court as he finished with a plus/minus of +21.