MINNEAPOLIS The NBA lockout stole Derrick Williams' rookie season.
There were a lot of ways he could have reclaimed it: better shooting, more attentive defense, even a vague hint of consistency. Williams is certainly to blame for at least part of his struggles this season, but there's no getting around what the lockout took from him.
The second overall pick in the 2011 draft out of Arizona, the 6-foot-8 Williams generated excitement the minute he first put on that Minnesota Timberwolves baseball cap in Newark, N.J., on June 23. But just eight days later, the lockout began, preventing Williams from working with the Timberwolves during the summer, cutting his first season to 66 games, his first training camp to two weeks.
Those are tough breaks, but they don't excuse Williams' inability to even once string together two consecutive 20-point games. In fact, he never had a streak of more than four double-digit scoring games on his way to averaging 8.9 points and 4.8 rebounds with one...