Posted October 01, 2013

Jason Kidd’s talk with Kevin Garnett about playing time ‘didn’t go too well’

Brooklyn Nets, Jason Kidd, Kevin Garnett
Brooklyn Nets

Jason Kidd will have an All-Star cast for his first year as an NBA head coach. (Nathaniel S. Butler/Getty Images)

Jason Kidd is wisely approaching his first coaching job as a student. He’s reached out to industry legends, hired his former head coach as his lead assistant and dedicated time to looking at the game through an entirely new lens. It’s a wise way to go through the transition process. Though Kidd has long been lauded for his cerebral approach to the game, he still has an incredible amount to learn in terms of managing talent and strategy from the other side.

But even his diligence and best intentions can’t fully prepare him for what’s in store, as Kidd apparently found out in some preliminary discussions with the recently acquired Kevin Garnett. Brooklyn’s new starting power forward is 37 years old and has logged nearly 53,000 career minutes — an amount of wear that would understandably make any coach a bit nervous. But Kidd’s attempts to persuade Garnett to potentially rest in back-to-back situations didn’t exactly go as planned.

From Adi Joseph of USA Today:

…Kidd already commands the respect of his players, who subscribed to the theory that he’ll relate better to them because of his recent playing tenure.

That doesn’t mean there won’t be bumps. Kidd spoke with Garnett recently about limiting the 37-year-old’s wear and tear by not allowing him to play games on consecutive days.

“It didn’t go too well,” Garnett said. “I understand what he’s saying. He just wants to make sure I’m durable. … I just don’t want to be told anything. I think I’ve earned the right to have an opinion on something that I’m doing. From a chemistry standpoint, I think it’s important for me to be out there with everybody.”

A first-time coach like Kidd might have an easier time with a veteran roster in some respects, but this particular dynamic illustrates the complications involved in managing an assortment of established, star-level players. Veterans like Garnett come to the Nets with firm expectations about touches, role and playing time, and it’s up to Kidd to soothe the egos of capable players in order to maximize Brooklyn’s potential. That could involve using Paul Pierce off the ball more frequently. It could mean lobbying Jason Terry to play the part of a slightly more traditional point guard. It might involve selling Andrei Kirilenko or Joe Johnson on playing fewer minutes, or in this case attempting to keep Garnett healthy for the long haul.

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Most every key player involved in a team this deep is forced to compromise something, and in some cases proven veterans — who have been preconditioned to a certain role for more than a decade — have a hard time letting go. That won’t necessarily be the case with the Nets, but it’s clear already that Kidd will have to be both strategist and salesman to get this cast of current and former All-Stars to buy in completely.

28 comments
Say What!
Say What!

Coach tell players what to do, no the other way around. Garnett May need to find a new zip code. Kidd has to set the standards.

BasketballGenius
BasketballGenius

what if your boss told you to come to work every other day judging you by how he thinks you feel (downer) let the season play on first and see how things goe before you make those type of decesions.....Kidd thinks he' s got a shot at a title or something not with that team (you aint pop, or phil or doc)  it will be a cold day in hell if they beat Miami, or the bulls  to even advance much less OKC (if wesbrook is healthy) or Memphis or golden state ....kid is already taking confidence of his players and attracting negative thoughts he's been playing ball so long he lost touch with reality.

bambam824
bambam824

You can't blame KG for Kidd practically calling him "old".

markdyemark
markdyemark

trade him--far past his prime anyway

lionoah
lionoah

I think the Nets have a very short window and with that said, mighta been better off with a retread. As far as anyone making this transition, Jason Kidd has got to be one of the best. However, in the East with Thibs, Spoelstra & Lebron and even Mike Woodson he's gotta go up against some talented dudes. The regular season might be one thing, but there is no way Brooklyn makes the Finals. There is just too much standing in their way...

Brooklyn is looking to fill the seats...they should have tried something else, here IMO 

slickwilly
slickwilly

The Kidd hiring was good for creating a buzz, but BKN should have hired Hollins or Brian Shaw instead. With their current roster, the Nets would've had a very legitimate shot at knocking off Miami. I just don't see it happening with Kidd as the HC though.

jackgorfin
jackgorfin

This is a disaster in the making, Kidd cant coach these guys, they will run all over him.  Phil Jackson would have been a great coach for this team, but Kidd has no chance.

2001mark
2001mark

This is a joke.  No NHL, NFL, or even MLB head coach would ever tolerate that attitude.

NBA players truly rule their league, coaches might as well be mascots.

JamesMichaelMercik
JamesMichaelMercik

Kevin Garnett's time on the court will be dictated by what needs to be done on the court at any given time. Mr. Garnett is still capable of stuff that is pretty hard to find i.e. when the pressure to win reaches a certain threshold, Kevin tends to be on the court if possible. The comment by the T-Wolves guy who said "he's still a whiner..." well, MrG is a whiner w a ring. He knows how to win and still has IT.

WHO*IS*ESPN
WHO*IS*ESPN

I just don’t want to be told anything."

================

Of course not. You's hard core. self entitled, about "ME" fool who puts self before team. 

RomarioDelLago
RomarioDelLago

Typical whiny baby Garnett - glad our T-wolves dumped him when we did.  Total Prima Donna. 

kyyled5
kyyled5

Good luck, Jason.

This team will rival the 2004 Lakers with Shaq Kobe Payton and Malone as far as ego.

And you sir are no Phil Jackson.

urbanblue1
urbanblue1

Exactly I understand what kidds trying the gregg pop way of using timmy but its not acceptable they get paid to play fans pay good money to see their heroes on the court if not injured there should be no excuses whatsoever

JoeCabot
JoeCabot

@2001mark Yeah, having a competitive player who wants to be on the floor every night.  Who needs guys like that.

casualumberjack
casualumberjack

@2001mark I agree. Frankly I feel most teams would perform about the same even if they didn't have a head coach. 

kj4027
kj4027

@JamesMichaelMercik You're basing your comment on the fact that he has a ring? Kurt Rambis has 4 rings. Will Perdue has 4 rings. Ron Harper has 5 rings. Steve Kerr has 5 rings. There is a whole list of players that have a lot of rings. You can't make your argument based on him having a ring. He is still a whiny and dirty player. With his talent, having only 1 ring does not say a lot.

ronsweet99
ronsweet99

@RomarioDelLago Lets see you glad the Twolves dump him , maybe i was in a coma but how MANY RINGS have you guys won since he left , because i knows he has his.

el-cid
el-cid

@RomarioDelLago Garnett stayed with an organization in a mid-market for 12 years despite their inability to get or hold onto enough talent to go anywhere.  After he got his first huge contract extension he...continued to get better.  So when he went to Boston and had some talent around him...

JoeCabot
JoeCabot

@RomarioDelLago Great point because the Wolves proved that they did not need Kevin Garnett in the ensuing years as evidenced by all of those playoff berths.     His comments regarding his conversation with Jason Kidd were not whining nor the work of a prima donna.  He simply voiced his opinion that he thought he would be more valuable on the floor than resting.

JoeCabot
JoeCabot

@kyyled5 Are you referring to the Laker team that reached the finals?

Thomaas
Thomaas

@urbanblue1 fans pay to come and support their team. you know....team effort. applies in more than one way

JamesMichaelMercik
JamesMichaelMercik

@kj4027 @JamesMichaelMercik  I am not really basing it on the ring... I just watched him play as a Celtic, and he was a joy to watch... incredible player & one the very few, imho. Regarding only one ring... basketball is a 18-man game, including players, coaches, trainer, front office, etc.  I watched people like Oscar Robertson .. a man who could/did average a triple-double over an entire NBA season... never win a ring until he left Cincinnati &teamed up with Kareem in Milwaukee ... sometimes someone in the NBA is so good that he can keep his team essentially mediocre forever .. and I feel like MrG is like that. 

Mike26
Mike26

HE is. Did you bother to read his whole post or were you simply trying to misconstrue his point altogether.

JoeCabot
JoeCabot

@Mike26 Hey Mike, great to see you again.  This is the third or fourth post of mine that you have tracked down today.  Flattering to have a follower.   Oh, and regarding my comment:  the ego issue on the 2004 Lakers was an overblown myth.   They got to the finals.  Any shortcomings on the part of Payton and Malone had more to do with age than with ego.

muser
muser

@Mike26 JoeCAbot might have been trying to expose the stupidity of the comment...maybe?