Much like Jrue Holiday, Terrence Williams had a mediocre showing in last year's Summer League joint venture between the New Jersey Nets and Philadelphia 76ers, but proved to be one of the most productive players at this year's event. Williams scored 22 or more points in the Nets' first four games before seeing just 5 minutes in their last contest due to an illness. After showing well late in what was a season to forget in New Jersey, Williams is slated to be an important part of an improved Nets backcourt and performed as such in Orlando.
With Derrick Favors still getting up to speed in the Nets first few Summer League games, Terrence Williams took full advantage of being his team's unquestioned go-to guy, using a sizeable 21.4 possessions per-game and functioning as his team's primary ball-handler and offensive facilitator. Arguably the top athlete in attendance, Williams was extremely assertive, both with his dribble and his jump shot. He won't have nearly as many touches at his disposal next season, but after a slow start in the first game, the Louisville product was at his best attacking the rim, showcasing his ability to play above the rim and fight through contact.
When he wasn't getting to the rim, Williams was showcasing his midrange jumper. Last season, Williams ranked neared the bottom of the League amongst guards in jump shooting efficiency off the dribble, but knocked down pull-up shot and pull-up shot after some struggles early. Williams seems to have developed a rhythm that he's especially comfortable with when attacking off the dribble with his right hand, but made some shots going left as well. Still erratic with his shot selection, Williams still needs to develop his catch and shoot game to become a complete off-ball threat offensive, but he showed significant improvement in arguably his weakest area in Orlando.
When Williams wasn't looking for his own offense, he had some good and bad moments distributing the ball. His first step and strength allows him to get to where he wants on the floor, and he used the pick and roll pretty effectively, however, he's still turnover prone and doesn't always mix his playmaking and scoring effectively. The latter was clear as he struggled to get the ball to Derrick Favors when the pair were on the floor together, and the fact that the rookie had his best game of the summer league with Williams out of the lineup in New Jersey's final game doesn't bode well in his favor.
Similarly, Williams was hit or miss defensively this week, especially with his effort level when closing out, but he has all the tools to effectively defend three positions and made that abundantly clear whenever his man tried to take him one on one. As is the case with most players with NBA contracts participating in the Summer League, Williams' defensive doesn't paint a picture of the intensity he shows during the regular season.
On the whole, Williams' Summer League performance isn't a great representation of what we can expect from him next season. He won't dominate the ball near as frequently playing next to Devin Harris, and will see many of his pick and roll touches shift to spot-up opportunities where he'll continue to be tested as a catch and shoot threat. Regardless of his role next season, Williams' improved pull-up game and consistency finishing at the rim made him a top performer in Orlando, and both of those skills will play a key role in how he impacts the Nets rebuilding process next season.