Last week, Jason Kidd decided to hang up his basketball shoes and retire from the NBA. The New York Knicks had a disappointing season as they were knocked out of the playoffs by Indiana Pacers after many believed the Knicks could be the team out of the east that to possibly challenge the Miami Heat for the top spot. One of the main reasons people believed this was because of Kidd, one of the greatest players to ever play the point guard position.
Originally drafted by the Dallas Mavericks, Kidd made his way around the league and played for a variety of teams including the Phoenix Suns, New Jersey Nets (now Brooklyn), and the Knicks. In his second stint with the Mavericks, he was pivotal in Dallas taking down Miami for the 2011 championship. Everyone assumed Kidd had enough basketball and was ready to live a nice, peaceful life of retirement.
Reports surfaced Sunday morning, however, that seem to contradict this theory. According Yahoo Sports, Kidd is actively pursuing the head coach vacancy of the Nets. After a first round playoff exit at the hands of the Chicago Bulls, the Nets fired head coach P.J. Carlesimo. Brian Shaw, the Pacers assistant, has been thought of as the frontrunner for the vacant job. According to Yahoo, Kidd has been discussing the vacancy with the Nets’ officials and is actively trying to identify a staff that could help him make the leap from player to coach. This move would make sense for the Nets for several different reasons.
Kidd played for the Nets once upon a time and took them to back-to-back Finals appearances. Kidd not only played for the Nets organization, but he helped them win the Eastern Conference Finals in consecutive seasons. Although they did get beaten by the Los Angeles Lakers and the San Antonio Spurs, fans of the Nets still remember and love Kidd. Not only did he take them to the Finals, but he understands the pressure of playing in the New York market and what it takes to be successful. This could go along way when dealing with media personnel and fans who demand excellence.
What better person for Deron Wiliams to learn from as he and Kidd both share the same agent and are said to be really good friends. Williams is one of the top point guards in the game right now, and his ability to take over a game is impressive. However, how much more dominating could he be if he was to learn from the player who is second in NBA history in steals and assists? Kidd could be vital to the continual growth of Williams.
The way Kidd played the game should translate well to the coaching realm. He played with an intelligence you don’t see from the average player. His ability to read defenses and control an offense was unmatched. Oftentimes, this is the reason the teams he played with were so successful. The ability to adjust on the fly while running an offense could be a valuable commodity to have while running a team from the bench. With the right staff, Kidd could become a very successful coach in the NBA, and it could happen much sooner rather than later.