As he takes over for the Dallas Mavericks, Jason Kidd is finally speaking out about the negatives anecdotes from his previous head-coaching job.
Kidd responded this week to the rather unflattering stories about him that were recently published in Mirin Fader’s best-selling book, “Giannis: The Improbable Rise of an NBA MVP.” The book alleges that Kidd engaged in abusive coaching methods while in Milwaukee.
“Did Giannis write it?” Kidd told Yahoo! Sports’ Mac Engel in response. “I’m waiting for Giannis for when he writes it. I’m aware of [the book], but if it’s not from Giannis I won’t pay attention to it. That book or whatever everyone wants to make a big deal about … I mean, he didn’t write the book.
“We helped build [the Bucks].” Kidd went on. “There are no feelings about it because it was not Giannis’ book. The cool thing is my relationship with Giannis goes beyond basketball. I talked to him a couple of hours after his son was born. Cool little name, ‘Maverick.’ See, you guys didn’t know that. That’s how close we are.”
Among the things said about him was Kidd once forced the Bucks to practice on Christmas and that he verbally abused Larry Sanders to the point that the center checked himself into the hospital.
He also punished the entire Milwaukee Bucks team because one player had an Android phone during his stint as Bucks head coach in 2014. If a player messed up during practice, he would make the entire team run sprints, while the player who made the mistake had to watch from the sideline.
Former Bucks center Thon Maker was remembered for this story after he screwed up the team’s group chat by using an Android instead of an iPhone.
“At one point center Thon Maker didn’t have an iPhone, messing up the team’s blue-bubble iPhone group chat,” the book excerpt read. “Kidd was upset about it and made the team run because Kidd felt that Maker not getting an iPhone was an example of the team not being united.”
The Bucks went a combined 139-152 and never advanced past the first round of the playoffs with Kidd as the head coach. He was fired halfway through the 2017-18 season.