Jason Kidd has had a rough start in his first year as coach of the Brooklyn Nets. It got worse when the NBA levied a $50,000 fine for his perceived act of intentionally dropping a cup of soda on the court late in Wednesday night’s loss to the Los Angeles Lakers to create a distraction that would halt the game and allow him to meet with his team despite not having any timeouts.
Here’s how it went down: With 8.3 seconds left down by two with no timeouts, Kidd, who was holding a cup of soda, appeared to say “hit me” to point guard Tyshawn Taylor in order to stop the game so the team could draw up a last-second offensive play.
After Lakers guard Jodie Meeks made the first of a pair of free throws, giving his team a 96-94 lead, Taylor walked toward Kidd near the sideline and collided with his coach, who was holding a cup of soda at the time. The cup of soda spilled on to the court. While it was being cleaned up, the coaching staff drew up a last-second play.
“Cup slipped out of my hand while I was getting Ty,” Kidd said of “Cupgate.” “Sweaty palms. I was never good with the ball. In the heat of the battle, you’re trying to get guys in and out of the game, and the cup fell out of my hand.”
Video replays appeared to show Kidd saying “Hit me,” something Taylor denied.
“No [Kidd didn’t say that]. I wasn’t paying attention,” Taylor said. “I just kind of bumped him. I didn’t even know he was holding [anything]. [But] coach was drinking a soda on the sideline. I was like, ‘What’s he doing?
“It could ice a free throw shooter and be a timeout when you don’t have one, but that wasn’t the thought process. I was just coming out, and he was in my way. ‘Coach, get out of my way, bro.’ “