It is a rare event when a coach gets traded. Then again, Jason Kidd‘s one-year tenure in Brooklyn was anything but normal.
Here was a coach fresh off of retirement taking over a veteran team with championship aspirations. The Nets, a team already boasting big expectations even if they were a bit undeserved and a bloated payroll, struggled at the beginning and faced injuries to their veteran stars. Kidd clashed with assistant coach Lawrence Frank, locking him away in a tower at Barclays Center to reduce him to writing reports.
Slowly Brooklyn righted the ship and advanced to the second round of the Playoffs. That was apparently not enough to save Kidd.
Kidd was traded to the Bucks in the offseason, the Nets unceremoniously dropping a first-year head coach and, perhaps, the best player in the franchise’s history in a somewhat ugly manner.
Seeing as there are no secrets in the NBA — particularly when it comes to the Nets’ front office — it was no surprise that Kidd confirmed he sensed the team wanted him out as far back as December as the organization seemed to be crumbling into chaos (h/t Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN New York):
Did I want to be traded?I think once [the Nets] OK’d the talk to Milwaukee, that just showed, whatever you want to call it, rumors or no rumors that they wanted to fire me in December had to have some legs.
That was a December report from Adrian Wojnarowski which suggested Kidd was in hot water. Then came the allegations that Kidd was seeking to usurp basketball operations power from Billy King. Instead, all he did was take Larry Drew‘s head coaching seat right out from under him in Milwaukee.
Everyone moved on.
Now, at least the Nets get to practice a little bit more.
Will Kidd succeed in Milwaukee though? This is a very different roster and maybe he will be allowed to have some growing pains rather than be under the constant pressure of winning.