New York Knicks point guard Jeremy Lin defends Dallas Mavericks point guard Jason Kidd in the second half of their NBA basketball game at Madison Square Garden in New York

Jason Kidd wants to be like Steve Nash for Amar’e Stoudemire

9 Comments

Jason Kidd has shifted his role in recent seasons. In Dallas, he went from the engine that ran the machine to a spot-up shooter who managed the office. It was a subtle but important shift and kept him capable as he began to get older. In New York, he’s expected to do much of the same. Dribble-dribble-dribble, pass to Carmelo Anthony in the high post, go to corner, wait, watch as Anthony shoots over two defenders, repeat.

But he’s got some different ideas. In an interview with official Knicks blog KnicksNow, Kidd drops the name of that other famous pure point guard over 35, the one that worked with Amar’e Stoudemire in his best years:

“With Amar’e, I hope I can be like a Nash to be able to get him the ball where he likes it to be successful. Make it where he doesn’t have to work as hard, easy layups, catch and shoot where he likes it,” Kidd explained.

Speaking like a true point guard, Kidd assessed the Knicks leading scorer and how he can make life easier for Anthony in 2012-13.

“Melo is one of the top five players in the world,” Kidd smiled. “For me it’s to get him touches that put the ball in the basket, so he doesn’t have to work so hard. He’s a guy that understands how to play and also understands how to win.”

via Knicks Now – Kidd’s New Crew.

That’s all well and good, but Kidd hasn’t run a lot in those kinds of sets in the last few years, and the big problem is creating the spacing with how someone (ahem, the star) needs the spacing for his game. And lost in all this is the fact that Kidd may end up having a better chemistry with Tyson Chandler, who can work the pick and roll and handle the lob.

But with Stoudemire working on more of a post game after his work with Hakeem Olajuwon, and with the spacing the Knicks will have with their shooters, there’s certainly a lot to be excited about. Kidd’s going to be the backup point guard, but can still contribute. The question is how much, and if the, er, system will allow him to.

Enjoy 50-best circus shots of last NBA season

Leave a comment

As of tomorrow, training camps around the league open, and all the focus goes to the 2016-17 season.

For fun, let’s look back one more time at last season — the 50 top circus shots of last season.

Stephen Curry driving the lane and throwing up prayers once he draws contact (and hitting them), there is Russell Westbrook throwing the inbounds pass off an opponent’s back, and so much more. Enjoy. Then let’s get on with next season.

To avoid trash talk, Steven Adams told Kevin Garnett he didn’t speak English

Kevin Garnett
5 Comments

Kevin Garnett intimidates people. In the machismo-fueled world of professional sports nobody comfortably admits they were intimidated, but in the wake of Garnett announcing his retirement, a number of players stepped forward to say exactly that. And that KG trashed talked them fearlessly.

Oklahoma City’s Steven Adams found a way to avoid that — tell KG he didn’t speak English.

Brilliant.

Adams was lucky, KG had a reputation for going harder at foreign-born players with his trash talk and intimidation. Then again Adams is not the kind of guy prone to be intimidated.

Pistons’ Stan Van Gundy “encouraged” by players speaking out, protesting social issues

CLEVELAND, OH - APRIL 17: Head coach Stan Van Gundy of the Detroit Pistons yells to his players during the first half of the NBA Eastern Conference quarterfinals against the Cleveland Cavaliers at Quicken Loans Arena on April 17, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)  *** Local Caption ***Stan Van Gundy
3 Comments

Athletes are injecting themselves into the needed national conversation about race, violence, and policing in this nation. That has taken some very public forms, including LeBron James, Chris Paul, Dwyane Wade and Carmelo Anthony speaking at the ESPYs, and Colin Kaepernick taking a knee during the national anthem and leading others to do so. Some NBA players likely will follow Kaepernick’s lead.

Pistons coach/GM Stan Van Gundy likes seeing players speak out.

A couple of his Detroit players — Reggie Jackson and Marcus Morris — said they backed the 49ers quarterback. Here is what the never shy Van Gundy said about all of it, via Vincent Ellis of the Detroit Free Press.

“I’m encouraged by the fact of what some of those guys stood up and did at the ESPYs and had a conversation,” Van Gundy said. “I’m really proud of the fact that we have guys that not only see the problem, but want to try to do something about it…

“To me, in some ways, (police brutality is) just the most visible to focus on and it goes to deeper inequities in our criminal justice system, our education system so there’s so much to focus on,” Van Gundy said. “I think it’s great that we have players that want to be part of that conversation, and a lot of players that want to go beyond the conversation and be part of the solution.”

Van Gundy has been telling his players part of that solution is to vote.

The players union and NBA sent out a release saying they wanted to work together to create positive change, but details are still vague on what that might be. The only thing we know for sure as we head into the NBA season — with as divided a nation and election as anyone can remember as a backdrop — is that some NBA players are going to try and keep the conversation going.

Sunday is 16th anniversary of greatest dunk ever: Vince Carter over Frederic Weis

2 Comments

It was the last game of the group stage of the 2000 Olympic basketball tournament at the Sydney Olympics, the USA was taking on France, another USA win on its way to another gold medal.

But what we all remember is this one play — Vince Carter dunking over the 7’2″ French center Frederic Weis.

Best. Dunk. Ever.

By anyone.

Weis was never the same.

In an impressive career — two-time All-NBA, eight-time All-Star, hours and hours of crazy highlights — this is always going to be the highlight at the top of the list. So we will use the anniversary of this dunk to look at it one more time.

Hat tip to nitramy at NBA Reddit.