You remember Jason Kidd, right? The guy who somehow talked his way into being the head coach of the Brooklyn Nets despite retiring as a player just a few months prior? The same Jason Kidd that was notorious for throwing coaches under the bus, who re-assigned his lead assistant Lawrence Frank — who was one of his main selling points to Brooklyn brass — to write “daily reports?”
Kidd made an unsuccessful power play for control of basketball operations, not even aiming to de-throne Nets general manager Billy King but establish a position higher than him. Think about this, and its varying degrees of fucked-up-ness, for just a second.
A barely-second-year head coach whose job was in jeopardy after the first two months of the season, demanded a position of power akin to Doc Rivers and Gregg Popovich (both of whom have actually, you know, accomplished something in their coaching careers), burying a claymore in the back of the very general manager who hired him in the first place. The Nets said “nyet.” To help us understand this in more dramatic fashion, we turn to William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Here, Prokhorov plays Peter Quince, Billy King plays Francis Flute, Yormark plays Snug, and Jason Kidd, fittingly, plays Bottom.
Ready. Name what part I am for, and
You, Jason Kidd, are set down for Coach.
What is Coach? a lover, or a tyrant?
An idiot, that kills himself most gallant
That will ask some tears in the true performing of
it: if I do it, let the audience look to their
eyes; I will spill drinks, I will condole in some
measure. To the rest — yet my chief humor is for a
tyrant. I could play Ercles rarely, or a part to
tear a cat in, to make all split.
“The raging rocks
And shivering shocks
Shall break the locks
Of prison gates;
And Phibbus’ car
Shall shine from far
And make and mar
The foolish Fates.”
This was lofty! Now name the rest of the players.
This is Ercles’ vein, a tyrant’s vein; a lover is
Billy King, the bellows-mender.
King, you must take General Manager on you.
What is General Manager? a wand’ring Brooklyknight?
It is the executive Coach must stab in the back.
Nay, faith, let me not play an executive, I traded for Joe Johnson.
That’s all one: you shall play it in a mask, and
you may speak as small as you will. (FIX)
An I may hide my face, let me play General Manager too, I’ll speak in a monstrous little voice. “GM! GM! ” “Ah, Coach! thy GM dear, and Executive dear!”
No, no; you must play Coach: and, King, you GM.
Yormark, the joiner; you, the CEO: and, I
hope, here is a play fitted.
Have you the CEO’s part written? Pray you, if it
be, give it me, for I am slow of study.
You may do it extempore, for it is nothing but roaring.
Let me play the CEO too: I will roar, that I will do any man’s heart good to hear me; I will roar, that I will make the commissioner say “Let him roar again,
let him roar again.”
An you should do it too terribly, you would fright
the fans and the players, that they would shriek; and that were enough to hang us all.
That would hang us, every mother’s son.
I grant you, friends, if that you should fright the fans out of their wits, they would have no more
discretion but to hang us: but I will aggravate my
voice so that I will roar you as gently as any
sucking dove; I will roar you an ’twere any
You can play no part but Coach; for
Coach is a stubble-faced man; a proper
man as one shall see in a hardwood court; a most lovely gentleman-like man: therefore you must needs play Coach.
No, fuck that, I want all of the parts.
That’s not in the script.
I don’t care, I want to be Coach, GM, President of Basketball Operations, CEO and owner and…um…sultan. Yeah, Sultan.
I want to go to Milwaukee.