Whether it's body language, facial expressions, hand gestures or the old-fashioned way -- verbally -- Nets point guard Deron Williams rarely leaves his feelings on the court up to one's imagination.
"It's funny,'' interim coach P.J. Carlesimo said Friday on ESPNNY 98.7's "Stephen A. Smith & Ryan Ruocco Show.'' "Some guys hide their emotion. Joe [Johnson] and him are almost the opposite in terms of emotion. Unless Joe is going really bad, you can't tell anything by his face or his body language. Deron is the complete opposite. Deron makes a shot and he's walking one way. He misses a shot and he's walking another. He's very, very easy to read.''
Like an elementary school textbook.
When Williams is frustrated, whether it be because of a turnover, a missed shot or a call by the officials, his expressions sometimes are demonstrative, often priceless. But his body language is much improved from the slumped, shrugged- shoulder look he displayed earlier in the season. That occurred before he got healthy and started a stretch in which he is averaging 23.3 points and 7.9 assists and shooting 47.1 percent from three-point range in his last 12 games.
"He's playing so well," Carlesimo said. " . . . I think it's his nature. You are always going to be able to tell how Deron feels. If he thinks a call went against him, it's very evident. He doesn't hide his emotions at all. It's just the way he is. I think his leadership has always been there, but he's playing so well right now and he's so animated and he's so vocal, and it's really been good for us.''
In Carlesimo's estimation, Williams will be good for the Nets in another area: recruitment. With a core of Brook Lopez, Johnson and Williams locked in likely for the next few seasons, Carlesimo believes the three players are embracing the responsibilities that come with being the faces of the franchise.
"They accept it and they embrace it," Carlesimo said. "They can't pretend that's not the case. It is the case. They are the ones that people look to and they are the ones players are going to say, 'Hey, I want to play with Deron and Joe and Brook Lopez. They've got something good going there and we saw what happened in Miami.'
"We see kind of a trend in the league now of better players wanting to go where the other good player are, even if it means they get a little less attention, even a little less money. But it's about rings, and I think that's going to be very, very important for us going forward."