Note: in honor of Jason Kidd’s jersey retirement today, we’re bringing this post back for the day. Enjoy the memories.
On Monday June 3, 1924, famed German fiction author Franz Kafka died from tuberculosis in an Austrian sanatorium. Kafka received little fanfare for his dark, depressing literature during his lifetime, but rose to literary prominence after his death with the term “Kafkaesque” entering into the English vernacular describing surreal, illogical and nightmarish situations.
89 years later to the day, former New Jersey Nets point guard and future Hall of Famer Jason Kidd retired from the game of basketball.
Unlike Kafka, Kidd was revered as an All-Time great in his chosen profession during his lifetime. To call the Nets NBA history prior to Kidd’s arrival in 2001 Kafkaesque might be hyperbolic, but it wasn’t pretty. When Kidd arrived in the swamps of Jersey, the Nets had won a grand total of one playoff series in 25 NBA seasons and had just completed a 26-56 sham of a season in 2000-01.
With a less-than-ideal supporting cast, Kidd took the Nets to their first two franchise NBA titles in his first two years in New Jersey, or, as Bill Simmons puts it, Kidd “turned chicken s— into chicken salad.” In 6 1/2 seasons as a Nets guard, Kidd made five All-Star teams, three All-NBA teams, and led the NBA in assists twice en route to a total of nine playoff series victories.
For all these reasons Jason Kidd is the greatest Nets player of all time, at least to anyone not contributing to the impending baby boomer-driven social security crisis. In honor of his retirement, we have selected his five greatest moments as a Nets player. Some are fun, some are surreal, but none of them are depressing.
Start: 1 of 5