File this away under "Bad News before Training Camp."
Brooklyn Nets point guard Deron Williams suffered an ankle injury while training in Utah that has left him in a walking boot. The Nets don't believe the injury is serious and fully expect the star guard to be ready by the time training camp opens Oct. 1 at Duke University.
While the injury does not pose any long-term risks, Williams' rich injury history must concern the Nets. Since the day his plane landed in Newark, he has battled both upper and lower-body injuries.
Just last season, Williams fought through severe ankle pain that the Nets remedied with a series of cortisone shots.
Prior to the 2012-13 All-Star break, Williams struggled significantly with his ankle.
“I couldn’t move, I couldn’t stay in front of anybody, I couldn’t beat anybody off the dribble, I couldn’t jump," Williams said last season.
The cortisone shots helped Williams tremendously as he reverted back to his all-NBA form. But as Stefan Bondy of the Daily News points out, extended anti-inflammatory use can potentially weaken cartilage and cause damage to the joints.
Although the Nets boast one of the league's deepest rosters, an injury of this magnitude could derail what promises to be a banner year in Brooklyn. General manager Billy King added Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Jason Terry to a mid-level playoff team.
Unfortunately for the Nets, their depth features significant mileage. The three Boston Celtics, plus Joe Johnson, have been NBA mainstays for years. Johnson dealt with his own injuries toward the end of last season and into the playoffs. With young center Brook Lopez dealing with his own chronic foot problems, the one concern heading into the upcoming season regards injuries.
Lopez underwent his third foot operation in 18 months during the offseason.
Although none of these players face injuries expected to last into the regular season, the concern exists.