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Sources: Nets coach Jason Kidd gets permission to talk to Bucks
Talk about a stunner.
After denying Jason Kidd a larger role within the front office to go with his duties as head coach, the Nets have given Kidd permission to talk with the Bucks, league sources confirmed Saturday night.
The Racine (Wis.) Journal Times reported that Kidd has been offered the job of Bucks president, and it seems more unlikely by the minute that he will return for a second season on the Nets' bench. Kidd reportedly is close with Marc Lasry, one of the Bucks' new owners.
Should Kidd leave, potential replacements could include Lionel Hollins or Mark Jackson as the Nets look for their fourth coach in an 18-month span.
It's a crazy development, given that Kidd spoke on Thursday at an event announcing the Nets' new training facility in Brooklyn, explaining how he was going to work things staff-wise when the team starts summer league play in Orlando, Florida, this week.
But ESPN reported that the relationship between general manager Billy King and Kidd has become strained, with King suggesting a coaching change to the Nets' hierarchy when the team was struggling at 10-21 last season.
According to reports, Kidd, who signed a four-year, $10.5- million deal to coach the Nets, wanted a raise for the 2014-15 season, in part because of the more lucrative deals inked by Knicks coach Derek Fisher and Warriors coach Steve Kerr. Both received five-year, $25-million pacts. Neither has coaching experience, which was Kidd's situation before last season.
Nets ownership reportedly balked at Kidd's contract demand, opening the door for him to check in on the Bucks' situation.
Kidd, who owns a small stake in the Nets, had a roller-coaster first season on the bench, guiding the team to a 44-38 record before losing to the Heat in five games in the second round of the playoffs.
Kidd abruptly "reassigned" top assistant coach Lawrence Frank early in the season to strictly writing daily reports and was fined a total of $75,500 by the NBA in two separate disciplinary measures.
The first was a $50,000 hit for spilling soda on the court to stop the clock late in the Nets' loss to the Lakers in November.
During the Nets' first-round playoff series with the Raptors, Kidd was fined $25,000 for publicly criticizing the officiating.
Kidd was hired by the Nets a year ago, not long after retiring after 19 seasons as an NBA player. The Nets opted to go with Kidd, 41, over Pacers associate head coach Brian Shaw, who became the Nuggets' coach.
If Kidd leaves, it's unclear what that would mean for free agents Paul Pierce and Shaun Livingston. The status of Kevin Garnett, who Kidd said late last week is expected to return to the team in 2014-15, also would become murky. Garnett is scheduled to make $12 million in the final year of his contract.