It’s not enough that the Brooklyn Nets are missing their two best players while a rookie head coach, Jason Kidd doesn’t seem to know what he’s doing. During their loss to the Los Angeles Lakers, Kidd intentionally told one of his players to bump into him in order to cause a spill on the court and give him a few extra seconds to draw up a play. It didn’t help, and the Lakers still won 99-94, while Kidd probably landed himself into a heap of trouble.
The Nets are now 4-11 to start the season, while the Tyshawn Taylor trick really didn’t work. Kidd is seen saying hit me to the player, and then raising a glass of drink in order for the bump to cause some spillage and get the cleaning crew out there. It gave the Nets a few more seconds to draw up a play for a Paul Pierce shot, but it didn’t really help. Pierce missed, Xavier Henry hit two more free throws on the other end, and it was over.
The Los Angeles Lakers are back at .500, taking care of business against one of the worst teams in the NBA. Nick Young continues to be on fire coming off the bench, scoring 26 points, including 4 three pointers. He did have a slow day in the win over Sacramento earlier this week, but is averaging 17.8 points per game over the last five, and D’Antoni’s decision to move him to the bench seems to be one of the smartest things he’s done all year.
The Lakers led by 27 points at some point thanks to Jordan Farmar (15 points, all from beyond the arc) being yet another great inspiration off the bench. One of the great things D’Antoni has done with this mess of a team over the last three weeks is give them a clear rotation unlike the beginning of the season, when it was all trial and error including some pathetic form from Pau Gasol and Steve Nash. Gasol has since played much better, while Nash is simply out with a back injury, and the Lakers are better for it.
The Nets? It’s not just Kidd who is in trouble for his dirty tricks, although he needs to get some credit for creativity. Paul Pierce, the most important player he has right now and a huge gamble for the Nets considering how much of salary cap he’s taking, was one of the worst on the court at 4-of-17 from the floor, finishing with 12 points. Kevin Garnett, his former Celtics partner, was having one of those games where you barely notice him there: Terrible defense, along with 4 points and 9 rebounds.
Things aren’t going to get better for the Nets until Brook Lopez and Deron Williams return and even then, a lot depends on Williams’ ankles – something not to rely on too much. Jason Kidd has a mess on his hands very early on in his coaching career, while Mike D’Antoni, someone no one believed in since taking the Lakers job, is working a slight wonder while steering the ship on the right pat without Kobe Bryant.