The NBA fined Brooklyn Nets coach Jason Kidd $50,000 for his spilled-drink stunt in the fourth quarter of Wednesday’s 99-94 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers. The league said the fine was “for intentionally spilling a drink on the floor to delay the game.”
You just knew the league would come down hard on the first-year NBA coach for basically finding a loophole in the rule book to gain an extra timeout to set up a potential game-tying three.
Fair or foul? I say Kidd’s sodagate was genius and it was easily his best coaching move of the season. It is all part of gamesmanship.
With his team down by 96-94 with 8.3 seconds left and no timeouts at his disposal, Kidd subbed in Mirza Teletovic for Tyshawn Taylor. As Taylor headed to the bench, he bumped into Kidd, who had a soda in his hands. Cameras caught Kidd whisper something to Taylor before he left the court. If can read lips, it appears Kidd said “hit me” to Taylor to create an emergency stoppage so that the clean-up crew can wipe the spill off the floor. Watch:
The stoppage gave Kidd and his staff enough time to draw up a play. Unfortunately, Paul Pierce missed the 3-pointer from the top of the circle and the Lakers walked away winners. Had Pierce made the three and the Nets ended up winning in overtime, Kidd would have pulled off one of the greatest coaching moves in history.
Never mind the fact that Kidd may have pushed the envelope a little far on sodagate. It was quick thinking on his part during the heat of battle. It’s the kind of move that forces rules changes, so don’t be surprised if sodas are banned on NBA sidelines next season. They’ll call it the Jason Kidd rule.
Joel Huerto is editor and publisher of OneManFastBreak.net. Follow him on Twitter @onemanfastbreak.