NBA Saturday: Jason Kidd Discusses Future
After this season, Jason Kidd will become an unrestricted free agent and weigh all of his options. While he would love to re-sign with the Dallas Mavericks, the 39-year-old point guard will listen to pitches from other teams and decide what move is best for him.
There aren’t many starting-caliber point guards in this year’s free agent class so Kidd will likely receive interest from a number of teams looking to upgrade the position and add a veteran leader to the locker room. Kidd doesn’t know what will happen this summer, but he’s open to anything.
“We’ll see what happens,” Kidd told HOOPSWORLD. “[I’ll go to] whatever team wants me. I would love to end my career in Dallas, but we’ll see what happens this offseason.”
In recent years, Kidd’s numbers have dropped significantly, but he is still able to impact games with his excellent playmaking skills and decision making. He understands that his career is nearing an end, but he wants to win as many games as possible before he has to walk away from the game he loves.
“I want to keep playing until I can’t play anymore, which could be very soon,” Kidd said with a laugh. “The big thing for me is I love playing the game. I love doing whatever I can to help my team win. Until that point comes – the end – I’ll keep trying to do that.”
There has been a lot of talk about the Mavericks pursuing unrestricted free agent Deron Williams this summer. If the Mavericks were able to land Williams, he would take Kidd’s place in the starting lineup. However, Dallas signing Williams doesn’t necessarily mean that Kidd is gone. He has many friends in the organization and sources close to Kidd say that he wouldn’t be opposed to playing a lesser role next season. While he could still start for other teams in the league, he may be fine coming off the bench for the Mavericks and mentoring Williams for a few more seasons.
Once his playing days are over, Kidd wants to become a general manager. He would rather evaluate talent and build a team than stay on the bench and coach the next generation of players.
“I would like to go upstairs,” Kidd said. “I’d like to be the person who puts all of the pieces together. We’ll see if that works out.”
For now, Kidd is focused on winning his second championship. While this Mavericks team seems to have taken a step back from last season, Kidd believes they are still legitimate contenders. Dallas currently holds the fifth seed in the Western Conference, with a 30-23 record.
“We have all of the pieces to be successful here,” Kidd said. “We just have to be mentally tough and understand that our defense is going to play a big part if we want to have any success.”
Kidd isn’t sure what his future holds, but he’s looking forward to exploring his opportunities this summer.
Magic May Make Coaching Change: Stan Van Gundy’s days with the Orlando Magic may be numbered. The Magic might decide to part ways with Van Gundy after the season in an effort to appease Dwight Howard. However, Orlando may not have the opportunity to fire the 52-year-old head coach.
A growing number of people within the organization believe that Van Gundy will quit after the season, mainly because he doesn’t want to go through the Howard circus again next season. Sources close to the situation say that Van Gundy was ready for the organization to move Howard at the trade deadline so that the franchise could move on and once again focus on winning games. He’s not interested in going through that drama again next season.
Van Gundy would be one of the top coaches on the market and would have no problem finding a job elsewhere. The New York Knicks and Portland Trail Blazers are two teams that would likely throw a lot of money at Van Gundy this offseason.
Whether Van Gundy quits or gets fired, one name that has come up as a possible replacement in Orlando is Nate McMillan. As ESPN’s Marc Stein wrote on Friday, McMillan is someone that the Magic would target should Van Gundy leave. Howard would be behind the hiring since the two men have gotten to know each other during their time with Team USA.
There have been rumblings that Howard presented the front office with a list of coaches that he’d like them to pursue this summer, which lends credence to the idea that Van Gundy is gone after this season.
Kings Sign Williams for Remainder of Season: The Sacramento Kings have signed Terrance Williams for the remainder of the season, sources close to the situation confirm.
The 24-year-old has averaged 7.4 points, 3.8 rebounds and 2.4 assists since joining the team on a 10-day contract. Williams was waived by the Houston Rockets last week, which allowed him to join the Kings.
Hill Sidelined With Knee Injury: Phoenix Suns forward Grant Hill today underwent a successful procedure on his right knee, the team has announced. The procedure was performed by team orthopedic surgeon Dr. Thomas Carter and was less than 30 minutes long. Dr. Carter repaired a medial meniscus tear in Hill’s right knee, which was discovered in an MRI on Thursday.
If rehab goes as expected, Hill will return before the end of the regular season. Hill has appeared in 46 games this season for the Suns, averaging 10.7 points, 3.6 rebounds and 2.3 assists.