NBA Lockout: Deron Williams and the Top 5 Players Headed Overseas

Kristian Winfield@@KrisWinfield_Correspondent IIIAugust 5, 2011

NBA Lockout: Deron Williams and the Top 5 Players Headed Overseas

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    With NBA lockout debates still brewing, more and more players have declared their intent to head overseas until the labor issues are solved.

    Though the blockbuster move of Deron Williams made headlines across the sports world, there are a few other mid-level names that are heading overseas to continue balling through the work stoppage in the States. 

Jordan Farmar (Point Guard: New Jersey Nets)

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    New Team: Maccabi Tel-Aviv (Israel)
    Opt Out: Yes 

    According to an article on Haaretz, the NBA's only Jewish-American player, Jordan Farmar, is set to play in Israel for the duration of the lockout.

    "Maccabi Tel Aviv received its first dividend of the NBA lockout this week by signing New Jersey Net guard Jordan Farmar to a contract for the duration of the work stoppage."

    Now, Farmar was never an instrumental part to the Los Angeles Lakers championship success, but he's a decent point guard who has adequate tools to lead a overseas team to victory.

    He might have only averaged 9.8 points and five assists with the Nets, but he's an above average three-point shooter at 35.9 percent from downtown and a pretty good passer in his own right.

Timofey Mozgov (Center: Denver Nuggets)

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    New Team: Khimki Moscow (Russia)
    Opt Out: Yes

    The poster boy for Blake Griffin's most vicious dunk, Timofey Mozgov is going to clear his head by playing in Russia for the duration of the NBA lockout.

    According to,

    "As confirmed by sources close to the situation, Timofey Mozgov agreed to terms with BC Khimki Moscow for one year with NBA out so he can Denver Nuggets when lockout ends."

    Mozgov is rather physical for a European big man and showed shades of potential with a few big games, including a 23-point, 11-rebound outing during his time with the Knicks.

    If he can work his game some more in Russia, his home country, maybe he can become a more dominant force in the league next year.

Sasha Vujacic (Shooting Guard: New Jersey Nets)

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    New Team: Anadolu Efes (Turkey)
    Opt Out: Yes 

    Sasha Vujacic, yet another ex-Laker-turned-Net, is headed overseas to play in Turkey for the remainder of the lockout. According to

    "Anadolu Efes Istanbul improved its backcourt for the upcoming season by inking shooting guard Sasha Vujacic to a one-year deal and an option for another, the club announced on Friday."

    Primarily known for his sharpshooting ability, Vujacic only shot a mediocre 36.9 percent from downtown. However, he, too, is another annoying defender who uses his quick hands and pesky ways to get to the ball.

Nicolas Batum (Small Forward: Portland Trail Blazers)

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    New Team: Nancy (France)
    Opt Out: Yes 

    According to an article by Sean Maegher of, Nicolas Batum has agreed to play with SLUC Nancy, an elite Euroleague team:

    "Trail Blazers forward Nicolas Batum spoke with Julien Deschuyteneer of Tuesday after signing with French club SLUC Nancy. In the interview Batum talks about what drew him to the club and Pro A League and what he hopes to achieve playing for Nancy."

    Last season with the Portland Trail Blazers, Batum averaged 12.4 points and 4.5 rebounds while priding himself on his stifling defense.

    With Nancy, Batum will become the go-to guy and develop the ability to create his own shot, which will make him an even bigger asset back in Rip City.

Deron Williams (Point Guard: New Jersey Nets)

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    New Team: Besiktas (Turkey)
    Opt Out: Yes

    However, the biggest name by far to declare his overseas expedition is the All-Star point guard Deron Williams. His unique combination of swagger and talent makes him one of, if not the best, floor generals in the NBA.

    Williams mixes his superior shooting ability with flashy ball-handling skills and spot-on passing to create a style that is unlike any other in the league. And now, he's taking that style overseas to play ball in Turkey. According to Howard Beck and Pete Thamel of the New York Times,

    "Williams, the Nets’ star point guard, has agreed in principle to a one-year deal with the Turkish club Besiktas, according to the team’s coach. His commitment would begin Sept. 1 — when the N.B.A.’s lockout would be two months old — and the deal includes an escape clause allowing him to return when the lockout ends."

    D-Will's numbers slightly plummeted when he was traded to the New Jersey Nets, but he still managed to put up All-Star caliber performances averaging 15 points, 12.8 assists, and 4.6 rebounds in his new home.

    If Williams could possibly improve his game by heading overseas for a year, the NBA could have a new monster on its hands at the end of the lockout.