Jason Kidd a no-show at Nets game; trade winds swirl

The “pay me or trade” me waltz that New Jersey Nets President Rod Thorn and star point guard Jason Kidd have been performing for more than a year now may be reaching the grand finale. Kidd, who was reportedly unhappy about not receiving an extension to his current contract, called in sick yesterday complaining of a migraine headache. Kidd called coach Lawrence Frank in the afternoon yesterday with the supposed illness and proceeded to not show up for the Nets game last night against the rival New York Knicks (the Nets lost).

We’ve all called in sick at one time or another. And, migraine headaches sure do make a great excuse, along with other stalwarts like coming down with a severe cold, being arrested as a result of mistaken identity and of course being bitten by a venomous snake. So, without further insight, we’re not sure whether Kidd was just feeling blue because of all the snow and gloomy weather in the Northeast, or if this was some tactical move to get his triple-double producing game out of town. But, we would tend to side with the latter, as there is really no reason for a 13-year NBA veteran to randomly miss a game unless he’s trying to make a point.

Rumorville, of course, is in full effect, with talk that Kidd could end up anywhere from Cleveland to Dallas to Los Angeles with the Lakers. It’s a risky play though for any of those teams, specifically because the Nets will likely demand the world in a trade. Kidd is still incredibly productive putting up 14.5 points, 6.7 rebounds and 9.2 assists per game for the Nets this season, but there are two huge negatives to consider in trading for the point guard: age and contract.

Kidd gets superstar money, at about $20 million per season – and he is on the books for this season and next. He is also 34-years old and injury and/or deteriorating skills could quickly change his status from stud point guard to salary cap liability. It will be interesting to see if other GMs around the league have the creativity to put together an appealing deal for the Nets and the guts to trade for a great, yet aging point guard.

Of the teams that are rumored though, it would probably make the most sense for the Cleveland Cavaliers to make a play for Kidd. Problem is, they may not have the pieces on their roster to make an enticing offer to the Nets and would probably need to get a third team involved. Those complicated deals take quite some time, so if Kidd is actually on the trading block yet again (which is still doubtful at this point) don’t expect a deal anytime soon.

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