Jason Kidd will be the new head coach of the Brooklyn Nets. That’s right, Jason Kidd, just a few weeks removed from his own playing career, with ZERO coaching experience at any level.
I love it. And not just for basketball reasons.
Far too often, I think teams take the easy way out. It’s so easy to make decisions based on comfort-level, and it’s even easier for these decisions to end up being overwhelmingly boring. It seems that the same coaches get hired and fired and hired and fired over and over again. Get on the carousel, run out of quarters to pay the attendant, so sit out a few rounds until someone gives you another handful of change.
Around and around the same names go, in every sport.
I don’t get it, and as a fan, it ticks me off. That’s why I gave the Cardinals credit when they hired Mike Matheny. Gave the Chicago Bears credit for their recent outside-the-box of Marc Trestman. And am giving the Nets credit for Jason Kidd.
(Important sidebar, before we go any further: this does not mean that ACCOMPLISHED coaches shouldn’t get re-hired, like Jeff Fisher or George Karl or Ken Hitchcock, etc…This is to say that Mike Fratello, Dick Jauron, Wade Phillips and the likes shouldn’t.)
Perhaps the most damaging thing an ownership group can bestow upon a fanbase in a time of transition or rebuilding is boredom. Apathy. Hopelessness. The Nets were supposed to emerge from the depths of the Eastern Conference under their new owner and climb to the top of the NBA, contending for titles in their fancy new building in Brooklyn.
Instead, they have struggled. A couple of coaches have come and gone, and the franchise is no longer the shiny new accessory in Brooklyn. TIcket prices are high and the payroll is even higher. So, it’s a critical time.
And the franchise responded.
At the very worst, Jason Kidd is a slam dunk hall-of-famer, one of the best point guards of all time, who is universally revered by just about everyone in basketball. Seriously, that’s his floor. A floor that will generate a whole lot of buzz for a team that hasn’t been buzzing. Not to mention, the guy is a Nets legend.
His ceiling? Maybe he hires a few veteran assistants, as many reports suggest, inspires a locker room, and takes the Nets to the top of the East and perhaps higher. Why not? It isn’t crazy to suggest.
In fact, the only way the Nets could have generated any more buzz would be to make Kidd a player-manager, like our buddy Will Leitch suggested at Sports On Earth.
Don’t give me the same old crap, over and over. Give me a reason to get excited. Give me a reason to talk about my team in the offseason when a coaching change was required. Give me a reason to send that season ticket renewal in. Give me a reason to hope.
Jason Kidd just might be that reason.
- Kidd Hired as Nets Head Coach (stlouis.cbslocal.com)