Chief Editor TSFJ
When Jason Kidd was hired by the Brooklyn Nets to be their new head coach, most of us thought that the man would easily be able to transfer his leadership as a Hall-of-Fame point guard for two decades to now being a leader of men for the Big Russian's basketball team. The man had never coached a game in his entire life, but hey, he'll be alright … right?
Then things started to happen.
- Jason Kidd got a DWI (along with a two-game suspension).
- A contrived drink-spilling when the man needed a timeout (one of the most hilarious things ever).
- The demotion of Lawrence Frank.
- Brook Lopez and Kevin Garnett went down with injuries.
- The look of uncomfortableness in that suit and tie.
What was the result of those "things" that happened? A 9-21 record in the first 30 games and the Brooklyn Nets officially becoming the laughingstock of the NBA. With a laughably high payroll and high-profile names on the roster, the ship was sinking fast and everyone was ready and willing to blame the light-skinned point god for all the holes on the squad.
Then more things started to happen.
- Jason Kidd got rid of that tie and grew a beard. (VERY IMPORTANT)
- Kidd started playing Paul Pierce at the 4.
- Shaun Livingston became an integral part of the rotation.
- The Nets made us forget about Brook Lopez and Kevin Garnett.
In 50 games since the beard growth (I could be off on when this happened, but I really want to associate the Nets' success to the beard), the Brooklyn Nets are 35-15, easily one of the best records in the NBA. If you prorated their last 50 games across an 82-game schedule, the Nets would be vying for the 1-seed in the East right now. Yes, you read that right.
What we know now is that the Nets are a really good basketball team, and in a league that loves to have its teams get up and down the court quickly with pace and athleticism, Brooklyn's slower pace and the use of post-ups make the Nets a bit of an anomaly. No one uses the post-up offense in the NBA better than the Nets, and it's one of the main reasons why they're able to stifle the Miami Heat, as all that athleticism doesn't matter when you can exploit a weak match-up on the floor. Per @Haralabob on The B.S. Report, Shaun Livingston currently leads the NBA in points per post-up, and it seems like Paul Pierce and Joe Johnson live off posting up on offense while using 23 seconds of the shot clock.
It might not be the most aesthetically pleasing, but the Nets have found their way, and Jason Kidd deserves a ton of credit for that. Also, the Nets' success now makes the Eastern Conference playoffs compelling, as I think we were all about ready to mute all the playoff talk out East until Indiana and Miami squared off.
Not anymore — Jason Kidd's Nets now have our attention. Here are your Monday morning reads to get your week started off right.
With all due respect to Jason Kidd, and I am a big fan of him, I don't think he should get coach of the year. There are a few reasons I can give to this debate.
1. The East was garbage this year, only Indiana and Miami hold a light to the other Western conference teams. That would either put Jeff Hornacek from Phoenix or Terry Stotts from Portland in the mix for coach of the year.
2. Even if the Eastern conference was bad, he still had Joe Johnson, Paul Pierce, and D-Will. That is still enough star power to go around. That would put Thibs in Chicago, Steve Clifford of Charlotte (remember they do not have an All-Star in the lineup), Mike Budenholzer of Atlanta, and Dwane Casey of Toronto in the mix.
3. The expectations on the Brooklyn Nets were high in the preseason. They were suppose to be a low 3 or high 4 seed after the season. They got a very low 5. So they really did not meet or exceed expectations.
My 5 COY choices would be in this order.
1. Jeff Hornacek- Phoenix (exceeds expectations with no All Star)
2. Steve Clifford - Charlotte (exceeds expectations with no All Star)
3. Dwane Casey - Toronto (exceeds expectations with 1 All Star and some scrubs)
4. Mike Budenholzer - Atlanta (exceeds expectations with 1 All Star and some scrubs)
5. Terry Stotts - Portland (exceeds expectations with 2 All Stars and some okay role players)
4 out 5 of the coaches' teams were not expected to either contend or make the playoffs. I would put Kidd in 6th in front of Thibs.
The beard and the pop incident was the key to it all lol
No no no, if Kidd is going to win Coach of the Year (and I certainly don't want this to happen), it needs to be this season simply because he corrected a 9-21 start. That in itself is something that I can't imagine him being able to replicate a year from now. This is as good as it's going to get.
The Shaun Livingston revival has been great to me, seeing him flourish in a prominent way is an under rated story in itself this season.
However Coaches of the Year don't spill.. well "accidentally" spill drinks on the floor for time out purposes. It's funny, but nah. Kidd gotta take this L.
I still think Brooklyn has simply just made the most out of a poor Eastern Conference though, and will ultimately get dusted off quick by Chicago.
So your logic is … he sucked so bad at the beginning that he deserves credit for being a lot less shitty later in the year? I mean, I get it - it's great stuff. But come on … Brooklyn was supposed to be threatening for at least a top 3 seed and they're fifth in the conference. No. Just no.
I totally understand the reasoning behind this … but no. No fucking way. You can't start the season 9-21 and be coach of the year, especially when this squad was expected to be a real contender to Indiana and Miami. They might be … but sitting in 5th in the Conference at the moment isn't worthy of Coach of the Year honors.
Yes, he's done a fantastic job in the second half - particularly after Lopez and Garnett went down - which is incredibly impressive. However, this is "Coach of Half of the Year" - it's Coach of the Year, and Kidd struggled as much as his team in the early going.
Maybe next year, though.
The Nets have become the new Celtics, and it's all because of Paul Pierce. I hate the fact I respect that guy so much, but my disdain for him knows no limits.
Unbiased opinion? All the Nets needed was for the calendar to change apparently. I won't lie. I thought Brooklyn's season had went to hell in a hand basket after Brook's injury and Kidd's "bump me" dropped cup stunt. But their depth has been surprising and (most importantly) they look like they're having fun. We forget how important having fun is when...you know...playing a game.
Biased? To hell with this team. DAMN THEM TO THE PITS OF PAULA DEEN HELL. Mirza Teletović and Plumlee? Both of you are on my shit-list. Paul Pierce? No comment.
These Brooklyn Nets must be stopped. Their 4-0 record against The King is the closest thing we have to an American sports tragedy.
So you officially nervous as hell or nah?
I always get nervous around playoff time. This is nothing new.
So you can take your "or nah" back to the coffee table where you found it and dispose of it, jack.
I'm still partial to Jeff Hornacek and the "Rising Suns" getting this honor, but I wouldn't oppose Jason Kidd with what he's accomplished in a strange year for Brooklyn.
I also find it funny (and great) that the biggest keys to their success has little to do with Deron Williams, but that's a topic all on its own.
To be fair, i don't think Kidd has a chance in hell of actually winning coach of the year. I think Pop, Horny or even Steve Clifford deserve the honor. But Kidd's done one helluva job.
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