Jason Kidd named Eastern Conference Coach of the Month for second time this season

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NEW YORK — Jason Kidd was named Eastern Conference Coach of the Month for games played in March, the second time he’s taken home that honor in what’s been a bit of a crazy season.

As the Nets got off to a tough start, so did Kidd’s tenure as a first-year head coach. There were rumblings early on that he could be in danger of being replaced, as the team with the highest payroll in NBA history began the year underachieving essentially as much as possible.

Add in the season-ending injury to Brook Lopez, and Kidd had his hands fuller than perhaps anyone could have expected.

But the Nets have turned things around substantially since Jan. 1, and even with the recent injury to Kevin Garnett, the team has managed to keep winning, posting a 12-4 record in March that was good for the best in the Conference.

Kidd downplayed the achievement before Brooklyn faced the Rockets on Tuesday, preferring to give the credit to his players instead.

“I think it’s not just the coach award, it’s the way the guys are playing,” he said. “And the guys are playing great. My job is to stay out of their way.”

Kidd became the first coach in Nets history to win the award twice in the same season, but he claimed that “records are made to be broken,” and also revealed that most of the accomplishments he’s earned throughout his career don’t ultimately mean all that much.

“The only one that I really treasure is the Olympic gold medal that I have,” he said. “Representing my country and winning a championship. Those are the only ones that I really recognize. Anything else is just part of the game. Coach of the Month is great, but it’s about those guys in that locker room.”

“It’s a great honor for those guys,” Kidd said. “Unfortunately, they just put the coach’s name on it.”