All Kidding Aside, Where Do The Nets Go From Here? 2.14.08

All Kidding Aside, Where Do The Nets Go From Here?

By: NBASCOUT / Special to

The blockbuster deal sending current all-Star and future Hall-of-Fame PG Jason Kidd to Dallas for PG Devin Harris is in limbo and on hold for now pending minor adjustment to substitute other personnel if swingman Devean George doesn\’t waive his meaningless and worthless Bird rights. The only value they hold right now is as an impediment to a deal that would let Jason Kidd realize his dream of earning a title down in Dallas. How much is that worth to Devean George and his agent Mark Bartelstein?*

If Dallas had been negotatiating in good faith, then unless Mark Cuban hasn\’t already informed George that he will make those Bird rights meaningless and worthless, he should do so now! All it takes is for Cuban to let George\’s agent Mark Bartelstein know that he is not willing to re-sign George to a deal with Dallas raising his salary against the cap and doesn\’t intend to \’play ball\’ in doing a sign-and-trade with another club that would have the same effect.

That would make those rights worthless and it is totally within Cuban\’s own power to make those rights meaningless. Informing agent Mark Bartelstein as such should end the matter. A little cash to George to make it worth his while to stop blocking the transaction might also \’grease the wheels.\’

In any event, the Nets ought be prepared for anything and start lining up contingency deals along the same parameters for Jason Kidd from teams willing to act if this one falls through. It appears that Cuban is playing the George card to keep this deal on the table in suspense until the trade deadline expires if it suits him.

New Jersey can\’t be held hostage by this deal for Kidd. They should move on with exploring other deals that make sense for the club as well.

In a worse case scenario, the Nets tried, but couldn\’t move Jason to a preferred team before the deadline and can try again in the offseason. At that point, Kidd\’s $20mil expiring contract will be attractive to many.

If New Jersey had to shut him down for the duration and let $20million come off the the books in 2009, then so be it. At least they\’d have cap space to bid on LeBron James, Andrew Bynum and others who will likely become available in the free agent pool that marks the team\’s transition to Brooklyn.

NBASCOUT is an independent freelance sportswriter that covers the NBA and the New Jersey Nets. He is not affiliated with the National Basketball Association. Copyright 2005-2008 by NBASCOUT, all rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without the express written consent of the author. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and not necessarily this website. You may e-mail NBASCOUT in care-of his wife, who writes for children, at

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