In one breath, Milwaukee Bucks coach Jason Kidd will tell you everything’s behind him, that only the Nets organization is talking about their ignominious separation.
In the next, he’ll openly blast the team’s management.
So it was business as usual Kidd, who answered questions through gritted teeth from Nets reporters, in his first return to Barclays Center since Kidd left the organization in the offseason to join the Milwaukee Bucks as head coach.
He once again denied the allegations that he sought power in the Nets organization, wishing to usurp power and seek a presidential position after one year as a coach. “Sometimes things don’t end the right way,” Kidd growled. “Sometimes things, one side talks, the other side goes about his business. Again, I think you’ve heard from their side, it’s business. It happens.”
Kidd left the Nets after one season and a 44-38 record, buoyed by a 34-17 second half of the season. It was a rapid season of learning for the ex-Nets coach, who went through a 10-21 start, an assistant coach benching, and a soda spill that cost him $50,000.
“I was still learning to be a coach, this is my second season, had a very interesting first year as a coach,” Kidd said, before throwing a jab at the media, who he felt unfairly scrutinized him in his first season as a head coach. “I thought it was kind of funny that you guys were marking down how many times I held a clipboard, did you do that with Hollins? Oh good. Let me know how many times he holds the clipboard.”
Kidd, who said he “respects everyone in the (Nets) locker room,” also addressed rumors about Nets management reportedly wanting to fire him in December, confirming that he believed it was the absolute truth. If he tried to hide his disdain for the Nets organization, he failed.
“I think it really helped me to see what I was dealing with, what type of people I was dealing with.” Kidd added. “Give me a fair chance to coach a team that had injuries, we make a big trade. But I think, understand that they did want to fire me in December. So I think it just shows what type of people I was dealing with.”
Kidd added he has no relationship with current Nets general manager Billy King, and left it unclear if they ever really had one in the first place. “He’s management. So that’s– my relationship with Billy was to figure out how to get things right when he was around. So. There was really no relationship.”
Kidd also responded to Brooklyn Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov’s comments about Kidd’s departure. Prokhorov referred to a jeering proverb: “Don’t let the door hit you where the good lord has split you.”
Back on November 4th, Kidd said he hadn’t heard the quote, and then challenged Prokhorov to a mock one-on-one. Today, he had a slightly different take, saying he’d heard it before. “He got it right,” Kidd said. “Yeah, it was good. I thought it was a great quote. I’ve heard it before. Was it something new? No.”
When asked about if he missed the city and the organization, Kidd was clear that he only had fond memories of one. “Brooklyn’s a great city. I think the Nets are very lucky to be here in Brooklyn. They have great fans. The spirit, the support is at an all-time high. I think it’s great. But besides that, I’m happy to be in Milwaukee.”