Jazz coach Jerry Sloan on Monday told point guard Deron Williams there was no reason for him to take personal responsibility, as he did, for the Jazz's losses Friday at Cleveland and Saturday at Indiana.
Said Williams on Saturday: "I'm gonna put these last two games on me."
Said Sloan on Monday, before the Jazz snapped their two-game losing streak by beating New Jersey 102-75: "They're not on him. I just told him that. No one player on this team has to take the responsibility for us losing. I take the responsibility for us losing. That's the way it's supposed to be. Plain and simple. It's always been that way."
Sloan pointedly directed attention away from Williams and toward himself.
"I've made some mistakes. I did some things, and hopefully I can do a better job," he said. "So, we move on."
Asked if it's not a good thing that Williams was willing to step up and accept responsibility, Sloan said, "Well, if he's the only guy on the team. I mean, I think we've got 12 other people out here that play on the same team. You know, everybody can step up and say, 'I made a mistake.' ... But responsibility still falls on 12 people, and myself.
"I mean, if he was playing 1-on-1 out there and he didn't have anybody coaching him, yeah, he could take the blame for it," Sloan added. "But that's not the way this game is. And it's never been that way. That's what I told him. I said, 'Say what you want, you just play and do the best you can and we, as a team, have to work to get better.' "
Sloan suggested he's always felt that way.
"I've never thought it was fair for one guy to take the responsibility," he said. "If he's working hard, and continues to work hard, then he'll work himself out of it, if that's what happening. I mean, we all make mistakes. I've never seen a perfect game yet."
Williams, who scored a game-high 20 points against the Nets, didn't necessarily sound like he was buying it all.
"I just felt like, especially the Cleveland game, if I would have shown up a little bit better that we would have had a chance to win and probably could have won that game. So I felt like that was my fault. The (Indiana) game we didn't come out strong, and as a point guard and leader of the team I take that burden on my shoulders," he said Monday. "Coach said it's not my fault. I mean, it's not totally my fault but as a leader of the team, and as a point guard, you know, it's my job to get guys ready, to keep guys focused and sharp."MISC.: After Monday's win, Jazz backup center Jarron Collins is now 4-5 in games involving his twin brother Jason Collins, the Nets' reserve center. Jarron Collins finished with six points in 19 minutes Monday; Jason was scoreless in 10 minutes ... Jazz rookie Morris Almond shot 0-for-2 from the field in five minutes Monday, leaving him scoreless with no assists and no rebounds in his first three NBA games ... Jazz power forward Carlos Boozer has been given permission to miss practice today so that he can fly to Miami, where his young son Carmani has been battling sickle cell anemia ... Usual Jazz backup point guard Jason Hart, who missed Monday's game while mourning the death of his maternal grandmother in Los Angeles, is expected to return in time for the Jazz's next game, Friday vs. New Orleans. ... Toronto center Rasho Nesterovic is expected to be out 1-to-2 weeks due to a sprained ankle sustained when he came down on the foot of Jazz center Mehmet Okur during Utah's visit with the Raptors last Wednesday.