When new Brooklyn Nets coach Jason Kidd told his players on Wednesday to make their way over to the pool, they thought the most strain they were going to have to endure was getting accustomed to the temperature of the water.
Little did they know, they were about to get their Michael Phelps on.
“See, when they sent us down there, they made it seem like it was going to be all sweet and gravy, and we were going to just tread water for a little bit,” Joe Johnson said. “We got down there and [we were] swimming laps … oh, man.”
Nets players, as Johnson alluded to, might not have been in love with Kidd’s idea, but their fans most certainly should be. Not even something as inviting as a pool automatically means Kidd will take his eye off the prize.
All the starters, as well as Jason Terry and Tornike Shengelia, were brilliantly put in the water by their rookie head coach.
Believe it or not, though, that wasn’t Kidd’s main intention from the get-go.
Terry and Shengelia, as well as starting point guard Deron Williams, were originally the only three down by the pool as they were trying to build up their endurance while working their way back from injury. Kidd then decided to ask his strength and conditioning coach if he could bring more players along, and when he received the green light, he told his other four starters to join the party.
Clearly, Kidd is very serious when it comes to coaching, and that’s one of the reasons why the Nets’ front office felt confident taking a chance in him fresh out of retirement with no previous experience.
Stressing team unity and getting back to basics such as proper conditioning – which are so often taken for granted – through this workout, indicate just how great of a leader Kidd already is.
He wants workers. Workers that give their all for each other. Although, if there’s anything else he could’ve done to make this even better, that would’ve been to get all of the players to take the dip.
But it was still a lot more than many coaches would’ve asked out of their guys, so no need to get ultra-picky.
The Nets better embrace these types of surprising workouts. Who knows what else the ever-committed Kidd will have up his sleeve?