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New Jersey Nets Training Camp: One Williams To Play, One To Sit In Preseason Opener

The New Jersey Nets first of two preseason games is quickly approaching with a roster that is still far from complete.  So when they take the court Saturday afternoon at the Prudential Center against the New York Knicks, there will be quite a bit of shuffling done by head coach Avery Johnson to keep the veterans sharp while trying to get a legitimate look at the those trying to make the team.

Rookie Jordan Williams isn't going to be able to follow along with that script.  The second-round pick disappointed Johnson when he showed up to camp overweight and is now out "five days to a week", forcing the rookie to miss out on a great opportunity to make an impression before GM Billy King fills out the roster.

The setback isn't completely surprising to Johnson considering he needed to drop a few pounds.

"His weight was a little bit up coming into camp, so it was something that needed to happen," the head coach told reporters. "Fortunately, the kid is recovering, he’s doing well."

With one Williams down and no depth at power forward, it's another Williams that will have to play more minutes than originally planned: recently signed free agent Shelden Williams.

The elder of the two Williams' will have to play the majority of minutes at the four along with D-Leaguer Dennis Horner despite only officially joining the team on Tuesday.

Shelden has never lived up to his draft position (No. 5 in 2006) but the Nets like the effort he gives whenever he's on the court, especially on the defensive end.  Hopefully the younger Williams pays close attention while he is watching from the sidelines.