Eastern Links: Nets, West, Deng, Shumpert

Nets players are reportedly confused about their roles on the team amid an organizational lack of patience with Jason Kidd, but Deron Williams tells Tim Bontemps of the New York Post that he thinks the players still support their coach.

“If we were losing some close games and he was making some bad decisions, that would be one thing, but that’s not the case,” Williams said. “We got blown out [Wednesday]. He can’t make us outrebound teams, he can’t make us put the extra little bit in to get over the hump. That’s on us as players to come out and play better.”

There’s more news on the Nets amid our look at the Eastern Conference:

  • Pacers power forward David West considered signing with the Nets after the lockout in 2011, but the Teaneck, N.J., native tells Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News that the team wasn’t interested because of fears regarding his recovery from a torn ACL.
  • The Bulls aren’t keen on the idea of trading Luol Deng and if they did, they’d need a piece that solidifies their future, which means they’d require someone better than Iman Shumpert of the Knickstweets Steve Kyler of HoopsWorld.
  • The Raptors are looking to the future and would ideally like to build with the draft, but in a strange twist of fate, they’re winning games and they may not get that choice lottery pick, writes Howard Beck of the Bleacher Report. Part of the reason for their success could be that several players — as well as coach Dwane Casey — are in their walk years.
  • The Heat are off to a strong start and so is their D-League affiliate, notes Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel.

Zach Links contributed to this post.

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