At halftime, the Cavs are up by 11 on the Pistons, and Mo Williams is threatening to turn it into a blowout. In the last minute or so of the first half, Mo (12 pts) gave a quick reminder why the Cavs traded for him, knocking down a three resulting from a LeBron drive, hitting a corner three on the next possession, and swooping in for a tip-in just before the halftime buzzer.
It’s obvious that Mo’s perimeter shooting keeps defense from collapsing on LeBron, but you could say the same for Boobie Gibson or Delonte West or even Damon Jones on a good day. The difference with Mo is that when his shot isn’t falling, he isn’t rendered useless. Mo has the ability to create, and more importantly, Mo wants to make things happen. He doesn’t just stand around waiting for catch-and-shoot opportunities — hence the tip-in where he sprinted down the lane and did something I’ve never seen Gibson or Jones do. In Milwaukee, Mo’s desire got in the way of building a rhythm and understanding with Mike Redd, but in Cleveland he seems to “get it” and know when to pick his spots while playing with LeBron.
We all made so much talk about Ron Artest, Andrew Bynum and James Posey in the offseason, but Mo Williams may be the biggest X-factor in determining who holds the NBA championship next summer.