Jason Kidd

Mavs Officially Announce Jason Kidd’s Coaching Staff

The Mavericks issued a press release on Tuesday evening officially announcing Jason Kidd‘s coaching staff, confirming a handful of previously-reported hires.

Igor Kokoskov is perhaps the most noteworthy addition, fresh off a stint as the head coach of EuroLeague team Fenerbahçe. Kokoskov has served as an assistant for seven different NBA teams over the last two decades and was the head coach in Phoenix for the 2018/19 season. Reports in July indicated that Kokoskov was expected to join Kidd’s staff.

Fourteen-year NBA veteran Jared Dudley, whose agreement with the Mavs was reported last week, was also officially announced as an assistant coach.

Kokoskov and Dudley will be joined by Sean Sweeney, who worked with Kidd during his previous head coaching stints in Milwaukee and Brooklyn, and Greg St. Jean, who worked alongside Kidd with the Lakers over the last two seasons.

Kristi Toliver, fresh off her 12th season as a WNBA player, will also be an assistant coach on Kidd’s staff, with Darrell Armstrong, God Shammgod, and Peter Patton rounding out the group. Armstrong, Shammgod, and Patton are holdovers from Rick Carlisle‘s coaching staff.

And-Ones: Lingering Questions, Ref Vaccinations, Noel, Jenkins, Mathias

The NBA’s summer of player movement may be winding down, but there are still some questions looming over teams. An ESPN panel of insiders looked at some of them on Thursday (before the Lauri MarkkanenLarry NanceDerrick Jones Jr. three team deal broke).

Among the predictions that were made: Nick Friedell believes Damian Lillard will eventually end up with the Knicks, just not in the immediate future; Kirk Goldsberry thinks that J.J. Redick will end up with the Nets; Andrew Lopez predicts Paul Millsap will start the season not on a roster, but will be picked up mid-season.

The crew also looks at which new coaches have the hardest road ahead: Chauncey Billups with the Blazers and Willie Green with the Pelicans each received two votes, while Jason Kidd with the Mavericks received one.

And, of course, the much-discussed Ben SimmonsSixers impasse was the first topic of debate.

We have more news from around the world of hoops:

  • The NBA will require its referees to be vaccinated against COVID-19, barring medical or religious exemptions, the league announced today. A report from ESPN laid out the scope of the policy, including that referees will receive booster shots once those become recommended, and that refs without an approved exemption who aren’t vaccinated will not be eligible to work games.
  • Knicks center Nerlens Noel‘s lawsuit has the potential to change the NBA-agent landscape, writes Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report. Fischer writes that as opposed to the league’s tampering rules between teams and players, there are no such prohibitions on agents trying to poach clients, and that this unprecedented peek behind the curtain could give the league incentive to put some protections in place.
  • John Jenkins has signed with BCM Gravelines-Dunkerque in France, reports Hoops Rumors’ JD Shaw (via Twitter). Jenkins played eight seasons in the NBA, averaging 5.0 PPG while shooting 36.7% from three on 319 career attempts. Jenkins recently participated with the Team USA select team as Team USA prepared for their eventual gold medal run.
  • Dakota Mathias has signed with the G League Ignite, reports Michael Scotto of HoopsHype. The 26-year-old played eight games for the Sixers as one of their two-way contracts last season, and Scotto reports that several teams have interest in him as a two-way player again this year. Mathias averaged six PPG and 1.6 APG in 15.4 minutes a night for Philadelphia.

Western Notes: Hyland, Porter Jr., Towns, Russell, Toliver

Rookie Bones Hyland averaged 19.7 PPG across four games in Las Vegas and his Nuggets summer league coach believes he can play right away for the NBA club, Mike Singer of the Denver Post writes. “His skill set is undeniable,” Charles Klask said. “… I think there’s always room for players like him that have great feel for the game. They find a way to get on the floor because they can do so many different things, and as long as he can bring it on both ends, night in and night out, I think he can be part of our rotation, for sure.” Hyland was drafted with the No. 26 pick.

We have more from the Western Conference:

  • There shouldn’t be any serious concern about the Nuggets’ ability to reach a rookie scale extension agreement with Michael Porter Jr., Singer opines in a mailbag piece. Singer’s sources say there shouldn’t be too much read into the lack of news regarding negotiations, since the club has until the start of the season to extend Porter. His agent, Mark Bartelstein, had a number of other clients to focus on during free agency, Singer adds.
  • Karl-Anthony Towns and D’Angelo Russell are determined to do what it takes this offseason to turn the Timberwolves’ fortunes around, coach Chris Finch told The Athletic’s Britt Robson. “There is a deep and genuine motivation by Karl-Anthony Towns and D’Angelo Russell to have their best offseason ever. And that’s really where it begins and ends, because if your best players aren’t all-in and ready, then you are not going to go very far,” Finch said. “They’ve seen their contemporaries having success. Devin Booker’s in the Finals. Nikola Jokic wins MVP. These are guys who they feel they are every bit as good as, if not better than — or at one point have been better than — in the league.”
  • The Mavericks are hiring Kristi Toliver as an assistant coach, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN tweets. Dallas had been seeking a female assistant for Jason Kidd‘s staff. Toliver, who remains an active player in the WNBA, spent two seasons in the Wizards’ organization.

Southwest Notes: Kidd, Pelicans Draft Choices, Pelicans Roundup

New Mavericks head coach Jason Kidd joined ESPN’s The Jump on Wednesday to discuss his time with Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Bucks, as well as what’s in store for his relationship with Luka Doncic in Dallas.

Asked about what he was focused on helping Doncic improve on, Kidd replied, “My job is to help make the game easier for him. Understanding the game within the game. Understanding how to get guys going, becoming a better leader.”

Kidd was also asked about Kristaps Porzingis. “Getting KP back to what he did in New York,” Kidd said. “Putting the ball on the floor, one dribble stop-and-pop… I remember a lotta highlights when he was putting the ball on someone’s head. So getting him back to that era in his basketball when he was having fun.”

We have more from around the Southwest Division:

  • In part one of his offseason mailbag, The Athletic’s Will Guillory explored some of the big questions of the Pelicans’ offseason. One such question regarded whether the disappointing seasons of Eric Bledsoe and Steven Adams were more about personal decline or bad fit with the team’s stars. Guillory maintained that Adams, who had trouble fitting in, has been serious about adding a three-point shot to extend his career, and that he’s been “shooting the snot out of the ball,” according to a source. But he also warns that Bledsoe could face boos at home if he’s still on the roster next season.
  • Guillory also confirms that many believe Jacque Vaughn was the favorite for the Pelicans’ head coaching position before withdrawing, but that Willie Green won many in the front office over immediately upon his first meeting with them.
  • In a piece for NOLA.com, Pelicans beat writer Christian Clark breaks down five prospects the Pelicans are likely to consider with the 10th pick in the draft. Clark quotes executive VP of basketball operations David Griffin on the need to improve the roster construction: “We need to make the pieces fit a little bit better. I think you could all see that this was a rather wonky group at times.” Clark names Corey Kispert, Trey Murphy, Moses Moody and others, in a clear sign that wing shooting is going to be at a premium for New Orleans

Southwest Notes: Harrison, Doncic, Pelicans, Green, Kidd

Newly-hired Mavericks general manager Nico Harrison hopes to make Dallas a compelling free-agent destination, Brad Townsend of the Dallas Morning News writes. The goal, Harrison said, is to instill a culture that players want to be a part of.

“My approach is really simple,” he explained. “It’s going to be about servant leadership that kind of empowers the team and the staff to be at their best.”

Harrison understands that leadership must start at the top of an organization. Dallas lost longtime president of basketball operations Donnie Nelson and head coach Rick Carlisle this offseason, replacing them with Harrison and new coach Jason Kidd.

The team finished with a 42-30 record this season and has an All-NBA superstar in Luka Doncic, a 22-year-old wunderkind that could aid in Harrison’s mission to entice players and build a culture.

There’s more from the Southwest Division tonight:

  • Callie Caplan of the Dallas Morning News examined the Mavericks‘ plan for Doncic next season. “It’s tough to nitpick an All-NBA player,” Harrison said. “The best thing you can do is surround him by a Hall of Fame coach (Kidd) who played his position and let those two vibe off each other. I think that’s going to help him tremendously.” Doncic averaged 27.7 points, eight rebounds and 8.6 assists per game this season.
  • Christian Clark, Rod Walker and Scott Kushner of The Times-Picayune grade the Pelicans‘ hire of Willie Green as head coach. Green, a former NBA player, will finish the season as an assistant coach with the Suns before reporting for New Orleans.
  • Jason Kidd has been in discussions with former Mavericks players Jason Terry, Tyson Chandler and J.J. Barea about joining his coaching staff, according to Mavs.com. All three players hold several years of playing experience and were on the team’s 2011 championship roster with Kidd.

Mavs Hire Jason Kidd As Coach, Nico Harrison As GM

JUNE 28, 3:38pm: The Mavericks have issued a pair of press releases officially announcing Kidd as the team’s new head coach and Harrison as the new general manager.

JUNE 25, 12:29pm: The Mavericks have agreed to terms on contracts with Kidd and Harrison, reports MacMahon (Twitter link). Kidd will be Dallas’ new head coach, while Harrison will be the general manager and run the team’s basketball operations department.

Kidd will sign a four-year deal, per Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link).

JUNE 25, 5:53am: The Mavericks are in the process of finalizing a deal with Lakers assistant Jason Kidd that will make him the new head coach in Dallas, according to a report from ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and Tim MacMahon.

Sources tell ESPN that Kidd has begun the “early stages” of assembling a coaching staff in preparation for taking the Mavs’ job.

Reports on Thursday indicated that Kidd had emerged as the frontrunner for the Mavs’ coaching vacancy and had begun contract negotiations with the team as it also prepared to fill an opening in its front office.

Longtime Nike executive Nico Harrison, who has strong connections with players throughout the NBA – including Luka Doncic – as a result of his two decades at Nike, is expected to be a hired to a top basketball operations position and the hope is that current VP of basketball operations Michael Finley will remain with the team and work alongside him, per Wojnarowski and MacMahon. The plan is for the duo to take over responsibilities previously held by Donnie Nelson, who left the Mavs earlier this month.

Even before officially joining the franchise, Harrison – who is also close to Kidd – has had in-depth conversations with team owner Mark Cuban about head coaching candidates, according to ESPN. While assistant coach Jamahl Mosley and others were considered, those discussions led to Cuban and Harrison identifying Kidd as their top target. Finley and special advisor Dirk Nowitzki have also lobbied for their former teammate.

Kidd has two stints as a head coach under his belt, having led the Nets for a single season in 2013/14, then the Bucks from 2014-18. He had a combined regular season record of 183-190 (.491) during his four-and-a-half years as a head coach in Brooklyn and Milwaukee, with a playoff mark of 9-15 (.375), including a lone series win in 2014.

As a player, Kidd was a member of the Mavericks from 1994-96 and again from 2008-12, helping lead the organization to a championship in 2011. Rick Carlisle, who coached Kidd during the point guard’s second stint in Dallas, gave him an unsolicited endorsement for the job on Thursday, telling MacMahon that he believed it would be a great situation for both Kidd and Doncic.

Kidd’s exit from the Mavs in free agency in 2012 was a little messy – he changed his mind and went to New York after originally planning to re-sign in Dallas – his relationship with Cuban and the team has since been smoothed over, Woj and MacMahon say.

Assuming there are no last-minute snags in negotiations between Kidd and the Mavericks, Dallas will become the third team to hire a new head coach this offseason, joining the Pacers (Carlisle) and the Celtics (Ime Udoka). Searches are ongoing for the Magic, Pelicans, Trail Blazers, and Wizards. Those teams will have to remove Kidd from their list of candidates if he was under consideration — we know he at least interviewed with Orlando.

Southwest Notes: Mosley, Mavs Front Office, Kidd, Vaughn, Pelicans

Assistant coach Jamahl Mosley is expected to leave the Mavericks, writes Tim Cato of the Athletic. Mosley is a respected coach around the league, and had a particularly close relationship with star Luka Doncic. Mosley had expected to receive serious consideration for the head coach position, but felt that failed to materialize as the team zeroed in on its preferred candidate, Jason Kidd. He will likely be an in-demand assistant coach, even if a head coaching position isn’t offered to him this summer.

In the same article, Cato examines the Mavericks’ front office power structure. The most striking thing, Cato writes, is that despite the overhaul, the structure feels exactly the same. The organization is surrounding new head of basketball operations Nico Harrison with former Mavericks players familiar with the team’s dealings, such as special advisor Dirk Nowitzki, vice president of basketball operations Michael Finley, and head coach Kidd, who is expected to bring on J.J. Barea and possibly Jason Terry as assistant coaches. Team owner Mark Cuban is expected to continue acting as the ultimate decision-maker.

We have more from around the Southwest Division:

  • Kidd’s contract with the Mavericks will be for four years, tweets Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports. The exact amount of the contract is still unclear, but this deal will run until Doncic is 26 years old, a critical period in the All NBA guard’s career.
  • Jacque Vaughn is gaining traction to become the head coach of the Pelicans, as Brian Windhorst reported this week. William Guillory of The Athletic examines how Vaughn – a current Brooklyn assistant and former Orlando head coach – could fit in New Orleans, as well as potential question marks for the coach, including the Magic’s lack of success with him at the helm, as well as the question of if he would continue to utilize star Zion Williamson as a point forward or rely more on the traditional guards.
  • Next season will mark the third coach in three years for the Pelicans, and Scott Kushner of the New Orleans Times-Picayune writes that it could be president of basketball operations David Griffin‘s last chance to get it right for a while. It will be crucial for Griffin to examine where and why Alvin Gentry and Stan Van Gundy couldn’t succeed in New Orleans, or else the team will be forced into another reset that it cannot afford. “The real issue moving forward is finding somebody who you’re in lockstep with,” Griffin said. “And that includes ownership as well. That has to be something we’re moving with together and moving with the same spirit and same energy. I don’t know how else to put it.”

Kidd Emerges As Top Candidate For Mavs’ Coaching Job

7:45pm: The Mavs have had discussions with longtime Nike executive Nico Harrison about joining the front office, MacMahon tweets. Harrison has been pursued for front office jobs by other teams, MacMahon adds. He would work in tandem with current front office exec Michael Finley.

6:35pm: The Mavericks have begun contract negotiations with Kidd, Marc Stein of the New York Times tweets.

6:00pm: Jason Kidd has emerged as the strong frontrunner for the Mavericks’ head coaching job, Adrian Wojnarowski and Tim MacMahon of ESPN tweet. Dallas is also close to hiring a new president of basketball operations, Woj adds.

The New York Times reported earlier in the day Kidd was a prime candidate to replace longtime coach Rick Carlisle.

The Mavs are expected to name a replacement for former president of basketball operations Donnie Nelson before hiring a head coach. Owner Mark Cuban and his unnamed choice to replace Nelson have held in-depth discussions about the coaching job and Kidd’s candidacy is supported by Dirk Nowitzki and others advising Cuban, MacMahon tweets. Nowitzki was recently named a special advisor to Cuban.

Kidd received an endorsement on Thursday from Carlisle, who coached Kidd from 2008-12. Carlisle, who was named the Pacers’ head coach on Thursday, believes there are many similarities between Kidd during his playing days and current star Luka Doncic.

Kidd interviewed for the Magic head coaching job after pulling himself out of the running for the Trail Blazers’ job.

Kidd’s record as a head coach — one season with the Nets and three-plus seasons with the Bucks — is 183-190. He was fired by Milwaukee midway through the 2017/18 campaign. He’s been one of the Lakers’ top assistants under Frank Vogel the last two seasons.

Jason Kidd Will Be Prime Candidate For Mavs’ Coaching Job

Former Mavericks star and current Lakers assistant Jason Kidd will be a “prime” candidate for Dallas’ open head coaching position, according to Marc Stein of The New York Times (Twitter link).

As Stein notes, the Mavs are focusing for now on replacing former president of basketball operations Donnie Nelson, so the head coaching search isn’t in full swing yet. But once the team’s front office is set, Kidd figures to be high on the list of contenders for the coaching job.

Kidd received an endorsement today from an interesting source: former Mavs head coach Rick Carlisle. Carlisle, who coached Kidd from 2008-12 in Dallas and recently stepped down after 13 years as the club’s head coach, told ESPN’s Tim MacMahon that he’d love to see Kidd get the opportunity to coach star point guard Luka Doncic.

“My hope is that Jason Kidd will be the next coach of the Mavs because he and Luka have so many things in common as players,” Carlisle said. “I just think that it would be a great situation for Luka, and I think it would be an amazing situation for Jason. I’m the only person on the planet that’s coached both of those guys and that knows about all of their special qualities as basketball players. To me, that just would be a great marriage, but that’s just an opinion.”

Although Kidd had a “somewhat messy” departure from Dallas during his playing days, things have been smoothed over since then, tweets Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News. Townsend suggests that Kidd has two key allies in Mavs owner Mark Cuban and newly-hired special advisor Dirk Nowitzki, which could help bolster his candidacy for the coaching job — assuming he’s interested in it.

Kidd has also been linked to the head coaching vacancies in New Orleans and Orlando. He was initially viewed as a strong candidate for the Portland job, but withdrew from consideration following a public endorsement from Damian Lillard. We’ll have to see if Carlisle’s comments have any impact on his potential pursuit of the Mavs job.

Magic Notes: Lottery, Weltman, Isaac, Coaching Search

Among the teams with the best odds heading into Tuesday’s draft lottery, the Magic were the only one to fall out of the top three. Orlando slipped into the fifth spot and will have a second lottery pick after receiving the No. 8 selection from the Bulls. While president of basketball operations Jeff Weltman was disappointed with the results, he said that he’s glad to finally have some clarity on next month’s draft, as Roy Parry of The Orlando Sentinel writes.

“I’ll look at it now as we have a lot of work to do, and we get to put a finer point on the work,” Weltman said. “So we kind of are looking just to put this day behind us and really drill down on the two picks that we have now. Knowing that we have two top-10 picks, that part of it’s very exciting.

“And then the other part is the draft, and it very seldom works out in the way that you prognosticate it. You look back on pretty much any draft, and it doesn’t go that way so it’s our job to find the players in the draft and we will. Now that we know where we’re picking and how many picks we’ll have, we’ll be able to kind of get to the next layer of that.”

There’s more from Orlando:

  • In the same story, Parry suggests the team may try to package one of the selections and possibly a veteran such as Gary Harris or Terrence Ross in an effort to move up. “We always explore all options and it’ll be interesting to kind of start to engage with teams (with the Magic) having two top-10 picks,” Weltman said. “Sometimes it ends up in deals that get done and sometimes it’s a lot of close but no calls. So we’ll see how that goes but we will be busy and the busyness starts with evaluating these two draft picks.”
  • Injured forward Jonathan Isaac shared some encouraging news in a recent appearance on The Sixth Man Show podcast (hat tip to Philip Rossman-Reich of Orlando Magic Daily). Isaac missed the entire 2020/21 season with a torn ACL and there’s still not a definite timetable for him to return, but he believes he’s making progress. “I’m turning the corner,” he said. “It’s like every day I feel like I’m moving better and I can do more. I’m like a kid in the candy story wanting to run around and do so much. I feel good. I’m getting better every day.”
  • In the search to replace Steve Clifford, the Magic front office wants someone with previous head-coaching experience, Marc Stein of The New York Times writes in his latest newsletter. Lakers assistant Jason Kidd and Clippers assistant Kenny Atkinson are two candidates that Stein has heard mentioned frequently.