New Nets coach Jason Kidd was arrested for driving while his abilities were impaired by alcohol in the summer of 2012 — right as he joined the Knicks for his final season as a player. Because of the guilty plea this summer, the NBA announced this morning it has suspended him for the first two games of the 2013-14 season. An annoying antecedent for Nets fans: he could have served the suspension during his final season playing.
On July 16, 2012, Jason Kidd was arrested in the early morning hours on suspicion of drunk driving after he crashed his Escalade into a telephone pole near his home in Long Island, N.Y.
Kidd pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor drunken driving charge earlier this summer. There was a deal with prosecutors that Kidd would officially plea to the lesser charge of “driving while impaired,” after he agreed to speak at two Suffolk County schools regarding the dangers of drunk driving.
“The decision is consistent with what the league has done in the past and we look forward to Jason leading our team versus Orlando and the rest of the year,” Nets general manager Billy King said in a statement.
Kidd will miss Brooklyn’s season opener in Cleveland on October 30, and their home opener against the Heat on November 1. He’ll return to the bench on November 3 when the Nets travel to Orlando. Assistant coach Lawrence Frank will be the interim coach in his absence.
But as Howard Beck of Bleacher Report notes on Twitter, Kidd could have avoided the suspensions in his first two games as head coach if he’d entered a guilty plea sooner.
Worth noting: Had Kidd entered guilty plea sooner, he could have served suspension last season, rather than have it delay his coaching debut
— Howard Beck (@HowardBeck) October 4, 2013
Still, when you think about J.R. Smith‘s 5-game suspension for cannabis, which didn’t place anyone — but Smith’s lungs — in danger, some might find the severity of Kidd’s drunken driving suspension lacking.
What do you think?
Follow Spencer on Twitter at @countcenci.
Follow Dime on Twitter at @DimeMag.
Become a fan of Dime Magazine on Facebook HERE.