It’s definitely a new era for the Dallas Mavericks with Jason Kidd calling the shots. While he was a very talented offensive player because of his playmaking skills, his defense was largely underappreciated.
So in his first season with the Mavericks, Kidd wants to inculcate a deeper defensive mindset in his players. In a report by Tim Cato of The Athletic, new Mavericks acquisition Sterling Brown said one of Kidd’s rules is to try and stop an opposing player by yourself. Yes, just mano y mano defense. None of that intricate schemes.
“That’s definitely straight from J-Kidd’s mentality. You’ve got to fight for it first, and then if you need some help, you can rely on your teammates, your guys that are around you. That’s definitely what his defensive structure is.”
Kidd’s decree doesn’t sound too appealing for Mavericks stars Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis, who are known to be offensive-minded players. While Doncic has improved defensively, he remains a liability. Porzingis can protect the paint, but when it comes to one-on-one defense, he’s still a little suspect.
Brown said for Kidd, defensive accountability is a priority.
“You’ve got to be able to defend and the team will be there to help, but deep runs in the playoffs are going to take that mentality and everyone can hold their own. There’s going to be great players we play, great scorers who you can’t stop from scoring. But we can try to limit them, contain them, and that team defense will always be there.”
To recall, Jason Kidd was a nine-time All-Defensive Team member, so his players can’t easily call him out.