Milwaukee Bucks: Imagining a documentary on the Jason Kidd years

MILWAUKEE, WI - APRIL 10: (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WI - APRIL 10: (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /
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Milwaukee Bucks, Jason Kidd
MILWAUKEE, WI – APRIL 02: (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

Imagining a Kidd era Milwaukee Bucks documentary: Being a “young” team

As the Bucks struggled to live up to expectations, Kidd’s front facing persona began to become more and more deflective. It frequently slid into the realm of being passive aggressive, but mostly Kidd began to rest on a variety of staid, meaningless phrases that, when combined with struggles on the court, resembled little more than excuses.

Primary among those was the mantra-like repetition of how young his roster was, and how that explained the team’s lack of success. Maybe that held water early in his tenure, but it was still a common soundbite at press conferences right up until his eventual departure. In other words, Kidd spent so long talking about how young his team was that they were no longer actually all that young at all.

Youth was certainly a factor in 2015-16, but it was also the season when two key players began to emerge beyond any notion of just being promising young players with potential, to actually becoming the real deal.

As the calendar crossed over into 2016, Middleton took on added responsibility in essentially trying to single-handedly will some life back into Milwaukee’s season. Middleton averaged over 20 points per game for a month for the first time in his career in January, and then followed it up by doing the same in February.

Suddenly, even with Parker only approaching a return from his ACL injury, the Bucks had a player who really seemed to be coming into his own and worth building something larger around. Then just the other side of the All-Star break, it quickly became apparent that there was another Buck who looked even more special.

With the playoffs completely out of the question, Kidd essentially moved Antetokounmpo to point guard and tasked him with handling the ball. To Kidd’s credit, it was a move that helped to kickstart the next phase of the future MVP’s career, and it was a decision that would even go on to be praised and admired, after the fact, on the personal blog of NBA head coach, Jason Kidd. (Yes, you read that correctly.)

Antetokounmpo earned his spot as the team’s primary option in that spell, becoming more confident in all aspects of his game, and recording five triple-doubles between the All-Star break and the end of the season.

In a season that was a resounding disappointment, at least two Bucks had proven themselves to be more than just young players still learning the game. Expectations would only go up from there, and with the team’s wins not tracking with them accordingly, the next steps were inevitable. It took some time but, in January 2018, Kidd and the Bucks eventually went their separate ways.