NBA / Jan 31, 2011 / 10:30 am

Jason Williams to the Grizzlies: Don’t sign me

You might have missed it last week, but a 12-year active NBA veteran point guard — with a championship ring and who three times finished in the League’s top 10 in assists for a season — became available. Playing one of the game’s most coveted positions, you would think some contending team would be interested. And yet Jason Williams is still waiting for work.

J-Will, a.k.a White Chocolate, was cut by the Magic last week. After clearing waivers, he is now an unrestricted free agent, but it seems the only team looking to bring him on is the Memphis Grizzlies. And apparently that’s not good enough for him. Yet. From the Memphis Commercial-Appeal:

Memphis (24-24) wanted to claim Williams off waivers and assume the one-year contract he signed with Orlando before the start of this season. But Williams asked the Grizzlies to not claim him, according to sources with knowledge of the situation. Memphis obliged, and Williams apparently will consider suitors with stronger postseason possibilities before agreeing to terms with the Grizzlies.

Memphis is willing to sign Williams for the remainder of the season.

Griz general manager Chris Wallace declined to elaborate on the situation. He would only acknowledge that the Griz contacted Williams’ agent. The Griz are looking to sign the 35-year-old point guard at the behest of team owner Michael Heisley, who is a fan of Williams’ ability.

Heisley is said to have the same infatuation with Williams as he did with Allen Iverson last season. The only difference is that a decision on Williams is expected to happen within a week or two, while the Iverson saga lasted a few months.

J-Will has a good history with the Grizzlies. In ’04 and ’05 he was their starting point guard on two playoff teams, averaging 17.0 points and 5.3 assists in the ’05 postseason. He was traded to Miami right after that, however, where he won a championship with the ’06 Heat.

Williams fell out of Orlando’s rotation after Gilbert Arenas arrived on Dec. 18, making just one appearance — a five-minute cameo against Toronto — between Arenas’ debut and when he was cut.

Of course Williams has a right to choose where he wants to play, and if that particular team doesn’t come calling, he doesn’t have to play at all. But if he still wants to play and only one team wants him, he may have to suck it up and start learning where Zach Randolph likes his entry passes. At least it will give him a chance to prove himself if he wants to play again after this season.

Would you want J-Will on your team?

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  • miller126

    Im still hoping he latches on to the Heat or Knicks

  • buffalo balla

    Grizzlies to Jason Williams:

    “Don’t worry about it….”

  • dagwaller

    Good player still, I believe. I’d like to see him with the Grizz, depends on where he’s at in his career. I don’t know how many contenders would really want him (he’s a little over the hill as an NBA player), so if he just wants to play the game he loves and get paid, might be time to look at other teams.

  • Promoman

    I’m not surprised at all about this. Jason wound up getting traded from Memphis to Miami in the first place a few years back. Eddie Jones was sent to Memphis as part of that deal. The reason Jason got traded was because of a ugly falling out with Hubie Brown & Jerry West. He cussed out a reporter or something if memory serves me correctly.

  • That’s What’s Up


  • miller126

    Jason Williams to his haters: Don’t you see this Championship Ring blinging on your ass!

  • Diego

    Nope. Not exactly a guy that is going to upgrade the team chemistry–and way past his prime. Time for him to buy the Rosetta Stone tapes and start learning some Mandarin Chinese.

  • Heat3

    I hope the Miami Heat gets him if they are smart. Heat has 2 point guards that just stink. And Orlando has 3 fair to poor p.g.s. Jwill got caught in the numbers game with Orlando. Duhon, Gil A. Nelson are not even close to Williams. But he had to watch these hobo’s play in front of him. Jwill can still play. I remember him with the Kings, Grizz and Heat, he made players better atround him. ALL the teams he played for he took them to the PLAYOFFS. Would be a BIG addition to any team. I HOPE he doesn’t sign with Boston. He is still very good friends with SHAQ.

  • miller126

    ^exactly!! @Heat3, finally someone with sum knowledge