Zach Tennen on Basketball - NBA and College
Michigan native Zachary Tennen is a basketball expert and blogs about his basketball perspective
Monday, June 3, 2013
Jason Kidd: the 19 year tale of a selfless soul
On Monday afternoon, 40-year-old Jason Kidd finally announced that it’s time for him to move on. For J-Kidd fans: have no fear because Kidd is almost sure to stay involved in the game as a broadcaster or a coach. That will give his fans an opportunity to see the more friendly side of him.
Just try to imagine Jason Kidd not staying involved with the NBA in some capacity. Kidd isn’t a guy who would run from the sport and never make an appearance again. In fact, Kidd is the total opposite. The way that Kidd played and expressed himself throughout his career stood out in a special way.
Players would rarely blame Kidd for making a mistake, yet he would often blame himself before others. Kidd was able to talk to the team and act as a player-coach whenever he wanted to. Most importantly, Kidd always knew what was best for the team. That is why Jason Kidd embodied one of the greatest leaders in the history of the game.
Let’s take a look at how rare of a diamond Jason Kidd was: few players with a career average of under 13 points per game benefitted their team more than Jason Kidd did. Ten years from now, you might be crazy to tell me that a point guard with a career average of 12.6 points made the all-star game ten times. There are no point guards today that are capable of doing that. Okay, maybe Ricky Rubio, but he still has a whole career to prove himself.
Jason Kidd was never known for his shooting ability and he always shot a low percentage. But he more than made up for that by being one of the greatest leaders a team could ask for. Kidd put in tremendous effort on the glass and his hands were super active on defense. The 6-3 Jason Kidd had the court vision of non-earthling and the rebounding ability of a big man.
If basketball was an ACT test, Jason Kidd would have scored a perfect 36. Kidd must have studied basketball in his childhood. I doubt Kidd just sat and watched games. I would guess that Kidd got familiar with the X’s and O’s as he got older. I would guess that Magic Johnson is someone Kidd watched closely growing up.
Like Magic, Kidd wasn’t just in it for the money, fame, and the celebrity life. Jason Kidd was in it to set an example and become the greatest at his job. I can guarantee that Kidd never, ever thought of himself first. Kidd understood the concept of a team game better than anyone.
Kidd didn’t just have the correct thought process, but he had the superior skill to go with it. Jason Kidd is without a doubt a top two playmaker of this generation. On a regular basis, he made plays that made us wonder if we were dreaming. One word that stands out to me when thinking of Jason Kidd is anticipation.
Nobody, and I mean nobody, anticipated their teammates’ next move better than Jason Kidd. It’s as if Kidd was a psychic, and maybe he is. We will probably never know if that’s true or not. Kidd even shocked his teammates by predicting their next move and getting the ball to them at times or in places they never would have expected it.
Jason Kidd managed to get one championship under his belt with the Mavericks at 38 years old and he deserved every bit of it. In fact, he deserved to get a championship ring much earlier but sometimes there’s nothing you can do about it. Winning a championship sure isn’t easy.
J-Kidd had his footprint all over the game and can continue to do so if he desires. As a coach or a broadcaster, Jason Kidd can open up and share has ultimate knowledge of the game. As a player, being coached by this hall-of-famer would be a blessing to young and upcoming players, especially those trying to master the art of playing point guard.
J-Kidd’s success in this league goes well beyond who he was as a player and well beyond how skilled he was. Jason Kidd had the heart of a lion, the fight of a soldier, and the loyalty of an obedient dog.