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DERON A GO FOR LONDON CLASH
- Updated: March 3, 2011
New Jersey Nets guard Deron Williams is set to shake off his injury worries and feature in Friday’s NBA game at London’s O2 Arena.
In what will be a huge relief, both for fans and for league officials, the two-time All Star gave himself the all-clear despite sitting out the contact portion of practice on Thursday with a bone bruise and a strained tendon.
"I'm playing," he declared.
With Jordan Farmar likely to sit out with an ankle injury, it will lift a Nets team which has lost six straight games headed into their meeting with the Toronto Raptors who are themselves looking for a boost.
“It’s been a struggle,” said forward Ed Davis. “We’re fighting every day to get a win. We want the win here and every time we step on the court. But they’re a new team since we last met them.”
Nets look for world domination
Players have shaken off the jet lag. Coaches too. The Nets are now well used to these foreign excursions.
Since Russian businessman Mikhail Prokhorov took over the Nets have been dispatched to Moscow and to China in a bid to become the NBA’s ‘global’ franchise.
"Under our new owner and with the Russian influence, we are trying to become more of a global brand," head coach Avery Johnson admitted.
"I wouldn't be at all surprised to see the Nets coming over here to London and to Europe regularly in the next five to ten years to play regular season games.
"We are glad to be in London and love it here. The weekend's games have been on the schedule a long time and we have had a chance to prepare for the travelling and the challenge.
"We are just concentrating on winning two important regular season games. This won't be exhibition stuff. We are the designated home team and hoping the crowd gets behind us."