All-Star guard Deron Williams eagerly anticipated the New Jersey Nets rematch against Jeremy Lin and the New York Knicks, yesterday. So much so, that Williams’ had the game circled on his calendar.
16 days ago, on Feb. 4th, Lin torched Williams and the Nets in his Madison Square Garden debut for 25 points and seven assists. Following the game, the Nets point guard took full responsibility in helping to spawn Linsanity and offense to those on Twitter who disparaged his performance against the undrafted guard out of Harvard. The Twitter rants became all the motivation Williams needed to even the score with Lin and make the Knicks star guard look, well, “Lin-significant.”
Williams attacked Lin early and often from the opening tip, to erupt for a season-high 38 points, including scoring 18 in the third quarter, and a career-high eight 3-pointers to lead the Nets over their tri-state rivals’ Knicks, 100-92, at the Garden.
Lin finished with 21 points, seven rebounds, nine assists and four steals, but Williams was far superior on this night, as he inflicted the majority of his damage from behind the arc. Late in the third, the three-time All-Star and Olympic gold medalist scored 12 consecutive points, including a four-point play and two 3-pointers, to the chagrin of Knicks fan Spike Lee. Williams’ stellar performance not only helped New Jersey (10-24) snap a five-game losing streak against New York (16-17), but further reiterated that he’s the best point guard in the Tri-State.
“I think it’s an amazing story,” Williams told reporters about Lin. “He was going to get cut the next day and then [to] come out and play the way he did against us and just keeps it going the way he has. Even tonight [Lin] had a great game, and it’s going to get overshadowed because of mine. He plays great basketball. It’s definitely a tremendous story.”