Despite his talent and one-time “best current player at the position” status, I’ve never been a huge Jason Kidd fan. So I certainly don’t think an aged Jason Kidd makes the Mavs a Spurs-conquering contender, or improves the team in any kind of long-term way.
That being said, I’ve become obsessed with the importance of ideas like chemistry and leadership and tone-setting. The Sheed trade changed the Pistons in ways I could never have expected or anticipated. Dominating the Eastern Conference for a few years also changed the Stones in ways I could never have expected or anticipated—although they were all negative. Who knows which way this one goes.
Who’s getting the shots at big moments? A still shell-shocked Dirk? a still emerging Howard? a gimpy JKidd? Kidd is fearless, he will take the shot. But he probably shouldn’t.
This team seems more in need of Shaq’s sunny demeanor than the Suns. I think Dirk would do a lot better if he didn’t have to be the center of attention all the time. And Shaq, regardless of current playing ability, is always the center of attention.
My hope for the offseason—Beasley goes to the Supersonics.
Imagine the Western Conference at that point, to a casual fan:
Seattle—Beasley, Durant, Green
Portland—Oden joining a near-playoff team
Lakeshow—Kobe, Odom, Pau, Bynum
San Antonio—the dynasty
Houston—Yao and TMac
Utah—potential title team
Dallas—Howard, Dirk, Kidd
Phoenix—maybe the best team in basketball
Denver—Melo and AI
Golden State—the most fun team in the league to watch
Those are ten legitimately exciting, need-to-see-them-in-person teams. The NBA is in a very good place right now (so we’ll probably have another unwatchable Cavs versus powerhouse slaughterhouse of a Finals…)