NBA, SPORTS

Billy King credits Jason Kidd for Nets turnaround; coach ‘doesn’t hold back’

March 6, 2014

With a 104-93 home win over the Memphis Grizzlies Wednesday night, the Brooklyn Nets moved above-.500 for the first time this season.

That’s a startling stat, considering the Nets’ success in 2014. But when you look back, you remember the tumultuous start to Brooklyn’s year – injuries to the veteran core, the removal of Lawrence Frank from the team’s bench, and a 113-92 blowout loss to the San Antonio Spurs that dropped Brooklyn to a season-worst 11 games below-.500 to end 2013.

Since that loss, though, Brooklyn is 20-8. The Nets look like a lock for the playoffs, and with a late-season run, could leapfrog Toronto for first place in the Atlantic Division – a move that would earn Brooklyn home-court advantage in the first round of the playoffs.

General manager Billy King joined Frank Isola and Stacey King on SiriusXM NBA Radio Thursday morning, and credited first-year head coach Jason Kidd with orchestrating the turnaround.

“I think that’s been probably our biggest adjustment, what Jason’s been able to do,” King said. “He’s been the leader that I thought he would be. He’s been able to get on guys, and he doesn’t pull punches. Whether it’s KG or Deron, he doesn’t hold back.”

Another key cog in the Nets’ recent run has been Deron Williams. Williams is averaging 16.7 points and 5.6 assists in Brooklyn’s last 10 games – a stretch that has included seven wins.

“He is the catalyst, he’s the glue that keeps us going,” King said, “because when he has the ball, he can create shots for other people. So when he’s playing at his best, it makes it easier for everybody else.”

During King’s appearance on SiriusXM NBA Radio, he also talked about the team’s two most recent acquisitions: Jason Collins and Marcus Thornton.

The Starting Lineup airs weekdays at 7 am ET on SiriusXM NBA Radio, channel 217. Listen to this and more NBA interview when you want with SiriusXM On Demand.