Anonymous Source Says Jason Kidd Would Be 'Terrible' Hire Amid Knicks Rumors

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistJuly 7, 2020

Los Angeles Lakers coach Jason Kidd during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Brooklyn Nets Thursday, Jan. 23, 2020, in New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
Frank Franklin II/Associated Press

Jason Kidd has been rumored to be one of the candidates for the New York Knicks' vacant head coaching job. But at least one person who worked with him in the NBA thinks he's the wrong man for the job.

"I wouldn't hire Jason Kidd if he was the last coach standing," that person told Marc Berman of the New York Post. "It would be a terrible choice. There's a reason Milwaukee is in the place where they are right now—coaching."

Kidd, an assistant coach with the Los Angeles Lakers, spent three-plus seasons as the head coach of the Milwaukee Bucks, going 139-152 with two postseason appearances (both first-round losses).

Mike Budenholzer, meanwhile, has gone 113-34 since taking over as head coach of the Bucks before the 2018-19 season. He has two playoff berths (the Bucks have already clinched a postseason berth this season) and made a trip to the Eastern Conference Finals last year.

Granted, not everyone around the NBA believes Kidd would be a bust in New York.

"He's a Hall of Fame player and young innovative coach who learned from his past mistakes," one personnel executive told Berman. "I think the Knicks' young players would relate to him. Whether a factor for Giannis [Antetokounmpo], wherever [Kidd] goes to coach, that team most definitely will have a seat at that dinner table when the time comes."

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That source was referring to Antetokounmpo's potential free agency after the 2020-21 season. A team like the Knicks, looking to transform its future by signing arguably the best player in the NBA, will be going hard after the Greek Freak (assuming he doesn't sign an extension before then or choose to remain in Milwaukee).

And the fact that Kidd has coached Antetokounmpo could give any Kidd-led team a leg up.

"LeBron [James] loves Kidd," one team executive told Berman. "But Giannis swears by him."

So there are mixed opinions about whether Kidd would be the right fit for the Knicks or whether he might be able to help persuade Antetokounmpo to leave Milwaukee. The Knicks have struck out in free agency for the better part of a decade, though, so putting all their eggs in the Antetokounmpo basket would be a huge risk.

In other words, if Kidd isn't their top candidate based on coaching merit—and it should be noted that he might be—the Knicks would be wise to go in a different direction.