Utah Jazz basketball: Marvin Williams finding his groove with Jazz
SALT LAKE CITY — Marvin Williams was wearing a huge iced wrap about the size of a watermelon around his right hand as he talked to a group of reporters after Saturday night's win over the Clippers.
Williams was the top scorer for the Jazz with 18 points, and by making 3-of-4 3-pointers he improved his 3-point shooting for the preseason to 64.3 percent (9-of-14).
As for the "injury," he said he "caught the ball funny" and worried that he may have dislocated the pinkie finger on his shooting hand.
But, not to worry.
"I'll be fine," Williams said, and the fact that he hurt his pinkie in the second quarter yet played the rest of the game suggests it shouldn't be a problem going forward.
The former No. 2 overall draft pick, who came to the Jazz from Atlanta in an offseason trade, has already shown what a strong addition he'll be this season.
Williams is starting at the small forward spot and has shown an ability to score both inside and outside. He also rebounds — he had eight on the night — and came up with four steals on the defensive end.
"He makes shots, man, and when things are right he can post guys up at different times like he showed tonight," Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin said. "When we go from strong side to weak side, he's ready over there and he's a very willing and capable shooter — so we look to get him the ball in the right situation."
Williams came out hot from the start, making a 3-pointer from the left corner in the first minute of the game and, after faking a trey from the same spot a minute later, sank a 17-foot baseline jumper. By halftime he had 13 points on 4-of-6 shooting, including 2-of-3 from behind the arc.
"I had an opportunity to knock down some shots today," he said. "I got some good looks and the guys did a great job of kicking it out when I was open, and I was able to finish plays. If I can continue to do that and get better, I think I can help the team."
However, he was pleased with more than just his shooting.
"I thought I played a pretty complete game," he said. "Offensively, things were going well for me and defensively I was really happy with the things I did."
Williams says he's still learning, but he feels like he's fitting in well with the Jazz.
"The thing I love about this team is that everybody competes," he said. "Each day we get better and better."
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