Deron Williams will not decide right away where he wants to play next year. NBA Free Agency began last night at midnight but Williams plans to meet with both the Nets and Mavericks Monday to better decide where he wants to go.
Williams will be able to get a contract worth one more year and $20 million more with the Nets but he is from Dallas and would have a better chance to chase a title playing with Dirk Nowitzki and the Mavericks.
Dwight Howard wants to play with Williams in Brooklyn. Despite running Orlando’s head coach and general manager out of town, Howard still wants out himself.
Dwight Howard met with new Magic GM Rob Hennigan Friday in LA. Howard told Hennigan he wants to be traded to Brooklyn Nets, sources say.
— Chris Broussard (@Chris_Broussard) July 1, 2012
The Nets simply do not have a lot to offer Orlando for Howard and the Magic aren’t going to let him go for nothing. Howard has a year left on his contract in Orlando and they will holdout until they absolutely have to let him go while trying to wait for the best deal for them.
Multiple league sources believe the Nets are losing hope they can pry Howard out of Orlando, and are working diligently to construct a roster to keep Williams that doesn’t necessarily give them the financial flexibility to absorb Howard when he can become a free agent next year. If the Magic do eventually make a deal for Howard – something that they haven’t shown an inclination yet to do with the Nets under new general manager Rob Hennigan – the Nets would be stocked with the kind of expensive veteran contracts that wouldn’t appeal to Orlando’s blueprint for rebuilding.
Williams has hoped to play with Howard in Brooklyn, but Orlando has shown no immediate intent to move its All-Star center, who has one year left on his contract, sources said. Williams has narrowed his free agent choices to Brooklyn and the Dallas Mavericks.
The Nets have moved on to consider a trade for Joe Johnson to pair him up with Williams if they can’t get Howard. The Nets and Hawks aren’t close on a deal yet.
If the Nets do not get a deal done for Johnson or Howard, they plan to pursue O.J. Mayo in free agency and try to re-sign Brook Lopez and Gerald Wallace.
One thing that seems a certainty is Jason Kidd going wherever Williams goes. Kidd has expressed interest in becoming Williams’ backup whether it is in Dallas or Brooklyn.
Williams is spending the weekend playing golf with Kidd in New York’s Hamptons, sources told Bucher, yet one more indicator the Nets have at least a fighting chance to keep Williams and add Kidd sometime after free agency begins Sunday.