Ok, the title is misleading. Actually, it is more of a lie. It promises something I can’t deliver.
I can’t make sense of the Nets’ decision to hire Jason Kidd, a dude who was playing in the playoffs a month ago (dreadfully, but whatever), instead of one of the many other experienced and respected coaches on the market (Lionel Hollins, Byron Scott, George Karl, Jeff Van Gundy, Nate McMillan, etc.).
That’s not to say that Kidd was a bad hire. He is revered as a leader and is probably one of the most cerebral 1’s in NBA history. But boy, this is risky business for the Nets. Remember, this is a team that fired Avery Johnson 28 games into this season before dumping interim coach P.J. Carlesimo after the Nets crawled into a cave and hid against the feistier Chicago Bulls in the first round of the playoffs . IF the Kidd experiment doesn’t work out (he HAS to hire some experienced coaches to join his staff) , the Nets could be careening toward another coaching change. They could quickly get a reputation as the Chelsea of the NBA.
And, honestly, why Kidd? Even if he knocked their socks off, how can one look at him and say he is half as qualified for this type of job as a Hollins (important side question: why the hell did the Grizzlies boot Lionel after he worked literal magic to get them to the Western Finals this year????? I WANT ANSWERS!!!!!) or a Karl. Of all the coaching vacancies, the Nets are the most attractive. Big fan base? Check. Talented roster? Check. Owner with a win-now attitude who is willing to make splashy moves? CHECK. Memphis, Denver, and Philly aren’t bad jobs either, but the Brooklyn represents the best. And they chose Kidd…
If this hire works out, I’ll be happy. There’s no reason to think he won’t be a good coach outside of lack of experience. And there definitely is something very cool about Kidd coaching the Nets. VERY COOL. I’ll be pulling for Kidd and the Nets this year (I’m a fan for life–they gave me a t-shirt AND a wristband at a playoff game), but I can’t help but be stunned by the hire.
There were some really good, safe, options for the Nets. They went with Kidd. Fun. But weird.