I had the pleasure of seeing Jason Kidd play basketball up close and personal for six-plus years in New Jersey.
Watching one of the game’s greatest point guards putting the Nets back on the NBA map with two straight NBA Finals appearances and six straight playoff berths was awe-inspiring.
But I find myself hoping he crashes and burns in Dallas. I know God doesn’t like ugly. But the way he forced the Nets to trade him at mid-season last year, the way he got Byron Scott fired and the way he pushed Nets management to sign Alonzo Mourning left a bad taste in my mouth. And I won’t even go into the domestice violence beef he had with his wife in Phoenix.
The Nets transformed Kidd from a household into a sure-fire, first-ballot hall-of-famer. He had the run of the franchise for six-plus seasons. He also got the Nets to fork over $100-million. Mind you he played the Nets and the Spurs off each other during contract negotiations. In fact, it was rumored that he wouldn’t have signed the six-year extension if Scott was still the coach.
The Nets didn’t relent to those demands, but you get the point. Kidd, as talented as he is, wants everything his way. When it comes to players vs. management, I support the player 98 percent of the time. This is one of the rare occasions when management is actually the good guy.
The Nets did everything they could to placate Kidd, taking chances on players like Mourning, who was fresh off kidney surgery, and Dikembe Mutombo, who hasn’t been in his prime in about 10 years. How does Kidd pay the Nets back? Trade me or I’ll make things miserable (No, he didn’t actually say that specifically, but that’s what happened).
So please pardon me for laughing my butt off after watching Tony Parker rip Kidd for 38 points and eight assists in the Spurs’ 105-84 thrashing of Dallas on Monday night.