Monday, September 29, 2003

(A lot) More on Jay Williams Thanks to reader Alex for alerting me to this USA Today article on Jay Williams' road to recovery. This is the most comprehensive work I've read on his injuries and rehab. Its worth reading the entire thing, but here's some selections:
Williams was injured June 19 when he lost control of his Yamaha R6 motorcycle, which he bought two weeks earlier, and struck a telephone pole while en route to a friend's house for dinner in Chicago. He suffered ligament damage to his left knee, nerve damage in his left leg and a fractured pelvis. Initially, doctors feared the leg would have to be amputated.
Knowing all the damage that was caused, it just seems unlikely that he'll be close to what he was. Being an NBA point guard takes tremendous athleticism, and all the hard work and medicine still doesn't guarantee that he'll get that back. But who am I to doubt him. There's also a short portion about the Bulls' inevitable decision concerning Williams' contract:
Riding motorcycles without team consent is among activities banned under terms of the standard player contract. General manager John Paxson says the Bulls haven't decided if they will terminate Williams' $7.7 million contract. "We haven't addressed or discussed anything beyond he needs to rehab and get better," Paxson says. "Obviously that's a discussion we have to have down the road with Bill Duffy (Williams' agent) and Jay's family. This is a business. We have to address it at some point. We don't feel the time is right."
Perhaps waiting for a while and seeing how his rehab timetable is coming along is the best option. Terminating the contract prematurely would be a public-relations headache to say the least. Another possible (although this also depends on recovery progress) option is leaving him unprotected for the expansion draft next year and seeing if the expansion Charlotte Bobcats will take a chance on the former college player of the year.

While losing a blue-chip prospect like Williams is always a loss, I was of the opinion that he was going to be traded this offseason , so I never really looked to him when figuring out the future of the team. It looks like the Bulls aren't feeling sorry for themselves, and supporting Jay while moving on without him. Whether they will also pay him is a yet to be seen.