ESPN’s Marc Stein reported the news via Twitter:
In another unforeseen twist of this wild offseason, sources say Jason Kidd has decided to leave Mavs and join Knicks on a multiyear deal— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) July 5, 2012
Stein posted on ESPN.com that Kidd and the Knicks have verbally agreed to a contract that will pay the veteran $9 million over three years.
Kidd is an experienced, unselfish player. His long and successful career will allow him to be a leader immediately upon entering the locker room. In order for the Knicks to improve team chemistry, they need a veteran like Kidd.
The 39-year-old will be reunited with center Tyson Chandler; the two players were key pieces in the Dallas Mavericks’ championship run in 2011.
Between these two, coach Mike Woodson will not have to worry about leadership from his players.
But Kidd’s contribution will not be limited to the locker room, as he can still play. He will not contribute much on the scoreboard, but he is still an excellent floor general.
Kidd averaged just 6.2 points and 5.5 assists this past season and put up 7.9 points and 8.2 assists in 2010-11.
If New York decides to bring back Jeremy Lin, it will create an interesting dynamic on the team. Kidd will almost certainly be unwilling to relinquish his starting role to the rising star.
But this move gives the team flexibility in its dealings with Lin. If the Knicks let him walk, they still have Kidd as their starter. If they bring him back, they will have depth at the position, and Kidd can be a mentor to the 23-year-old.
The Knicks were able to get Kidd at $3 million a season, so they are not grossly overpaying for his services.
They now have the veteran as an insurance policy in case they decide Lin is not worth the money.
His chemistry with Chandler and his leadership qualities are further reasons why this was a good move, at least for this year.
However, Kidd is now under contract for three years and will be 42 when the deal expires. Entering into a long-term deal with a player of his age is a risky move.
Still, the team did improve its roster by bringing Kidd on board.
Source confirms Jason Kidd has turned down 3 yr/$9.5M offer from Mavs to play w/Knicks—who are also likely to match Houston offer for Lin.— David Aldridge (@daldridgetnt) July 5, 2012
ESPN’s Ric Bucher pointed out how much this move must sting for the Mavs:
JKidd, the Samaritan: chose NYK "because I think I can help." Also feels NYK has more "pieces." Ouchy for champs, 1 year removed.— Ric Bucher (@RicBucher) July 5, 2012
Star-Telegram beat reporter Dwain Price identified the Mavericks' next target at point guard:
Once they quickly get Jason Kidd underwraps, the #Mavs will try to get Laker free agent PG Ramon Sessions on their roster.— Dwain Price (@DwainPrice) July 5, 2012
Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel noted how many NBA players are effective in using their “old-man game” nowadays:
With the new deals for Steve Nash and Jason Kidd, and with what Ray Allen is about to sign, is there any doubt that 40 is the new NBA 30?— Ira Winderman (@IraHeatBeat) July 5, 2012
Michael Lee of The Washington Post is speculating which early-2000s All-Star will be next to ink a new deal:
Jason Kidd signs for 3 years with NYK, Steve Nash might recruit Grant Hill to LAL. Glenn Robinson is like, "My mid-range J is still nice!"— Michael Lee (@MrMichaelLee) July 5, 2012