Jason Kidd’s hiring has raised concerns as details of his past domestic abuse resurface, but the Mavs, a franchise with its own troubled past, is standing by its man.
Dallas Mavericks CEO Cynthia Marshall said Tuesday she had a pair of “long, intense” conversations with the new Mavs head coach about his 2001 domestic violence incident.
By the end of that conversation, Marshall, a domestic abuse survivor, was convinced that Kidd was the right guy for the job.
“I told him, ‘I know it’s uncomfortable, but it is what it is,’” Marshall said, via the Dallas Morning News. “‘It’s part of the history of the Mavs, so I have to address it. And it’s part of my personal history.’
“There were multiple reasons we had to do this. By the time I hung up the phone, I didn’t find any reason not to hire him. None. And of course, that’s not discounting anything that’s happened in the past. Domestic violence is horrible. I lived through it.”
Jason Kidd and the Mavs reached a deal for him to become the new head coach after Rick Carlisle led the team for 13 seasons.
Kidd played under Carlisle and won a title with him in 2011.
Kidd, a former Mav who played under Carlisle and won a title with him in 2011, had a Hall of Fame career and was head coach for the Brooklyn Nets and Milwaukee Bucks for five seasons.
The 48-year-old spent the last two seasons as an assistant on the Los Angeles Lakers staff under Frank Vogel.
Still, Kidd’s connection to a 2001 domestic violence incident is something Marshall and Mavs owner Mark Cuban couldn’t overlook.
This is the same franchise that vowed to stay away from such individuals following a report that detailed a number of high-profile incidents regarding harassment and abuse within the organization.
The team’s former president, former team beat writer, and another front office staff member were all facing separate sexual harassment or abuse allegations.
As a result, Cuban hired Marshall to begin the clean-up and installed a “zero-tolerance policy” within the organization.
Kidd pleaded guilty in 2001 and was sentenced to serve six months of anger management classes.
Marshall used her experience with her abusive father to sit down with Kidd and talk directly about her past and his experience since that 2001 incident.
“I said, ‘Jason, I need you to take me through your journey, and I’m particularly interested in the details of what happened back in 2001 — and any other details that you want to tell me about. And I want to know what action you’ve taken since then, relative to anger management, battery intervention.’ And then I told Jason about my own childhood experience with domestic violence,” she said, via the Dallas Morning News.
“I told him, ‘I just need you to talk to me. We have a history here that cannot be ignored. That’s how I got here. And we’ve worked hard to address the issues that brought me here.’”
On July 15, Kidd is expected to address everything himself at his introductory press conference; something Marshall said Kidd is looking forward to.
“I will let Jason speak for himself,” Marshall said, via the Dallas Morning News. “That is something that I asked him to do. He didn’t hesitate. He said he looked forward to it. His desire is to create change for the better.”