If you were wondering why Jason Kidd’s jersey retirement seemed like it ended before it even began, it’s because that’s exactly how the new Brooklyn Nets coach wanted it.
“We can do it right now,” Kidd said of the ceremony before the win on Tuesday against the Boston Celtics. “Just want it quick. [Doing it before the regular season] was my choice. During training camp would be even better. It’s not about me. It’s about the players.”
The briefness of the ceremony, as well as Kidd’s statement in the days leading up to it, is nothing to sneeze at. The combination of the two speaks volumes about the type of coach Kidd is.
For someone who was once a star, someone who got this job as randomly as anyone who’s ever been hired as a head coach, Kidd sports no ego whatsoever. This man couldn’t even put his own jersey retirement ahead of a meaningless preseason game.
There’s no question that Kidd’s commitment to his players is going to pay great dividends for the Nets in the long run. A team that sees that their coach isn’t caught up in celebrating individual accolades will only adopt the same mentality over time.
For the Nets, that’s easily going to be one of the most important aspects of this upcoming season. The stars on this team cannot put great emphasis on piling up stats the way they always have. It has to be a selfless effort throughout.
That selflessness shouldn’t be too worrisome. Coach Kidd’s already demonstrating it through the outlook he has on his own accomplishments.
Teaching doesn’t get much better than that.