Jason Kidd will serve as head coach of the Nets next season, according to Yahoo! NBA columnist Adrian Wojnarowski. The story was first reported by the Philadelphia Inquirer's John Mitchell and the hiring was confirmed by the Nets in a Wednesday night press release. Kidd will be introduced to the media in a Thursday press conference.
After much speculation about who would take over for interim lead man P.J. Carlesimo, culminating with a climactic five-hour interview on Wednesday with Pacers assistant coach Brian Shaw, it appears the job will go to Kidd, a future Hall of Fame point guard who spent last season playing for the Knicks.
Kidd's contract will be guaranteed for three years and might include an option on the fourth year. He's currently targeting Lawrence Frank and Tim Grgurich as his top assistants. Kidd has no coaching experience, but the Nets believe the blueprint set by Warriors head coach Mark Jackson, also a successful player who took that job with no experience and led his team to the second round of the playoffs this season, bodes well.
Kidd, a ten-time All-Star, spent six seasons with the Nets and most notably led them to the NBA Finals twice in a row after a lengthy playoff drought. While the Nets were runners-up to the Lakers and Spurs, Kidd finally won a title with the Mavericks in 2011.
It will be interesting to watch how Kidd does for a number of reasons, but the most compelling aspect will be to see how he deals with player discord, given his reputation as a coach killer. Of course, star point guard Deron Williams has been given the same tag by many observers, though he has denied having a hand in Jerry Sloan's retirement in Utah and expressed surprise and disappointment after Avery Johnson was fired in Brooklyn.
Zach Links contributed to this post.