Ex-NBA guard: Jason Kidd would have ‘every right to slap the s–t’ out of Luka Doncic in hypothetical scenario

Jason Simpson
3 Min Read
Peter Casey-USA TODAY Sports

During a recent episode of the “Gil’s Arena” podcast, former NBA guard Brandon Jennings found himself involved in a spirited discussion about how today’s NBA coaches have to interact with their players.

At a certain point, the conversation reached a hypothetical scenario in which members of the show were discussing what would happen if Dallas Mavericks head coach Jason Kidd called out superstar guard Luka Doncic in a team meeting for failing to get back on defense.

The podcast crew ultimately arrived at the idea that such a situation could create an unhappy superstar where the organization would have to choose between its head coach and its franchise player.

Jennings had a strong reaction to that.

“Jason Kidd would have every right to slap the s— out of him,” Jennings said. “… I’m with that too, though. You gonna do all that? I’ma slap the s— out you.”

During the 2024 NBA Playoffs, Doncic carried a heavy load to help the Mavericks reach the NBA Finals. It’s a virtual guarantee that they wouldn’t have gotten there without him.

But Dallas lost in five games to the Boston Celtics in the championship series, and Doncic’s play came into question at times. In particular, his effort on the defensive side of the ball became a talking point throughout the series.

The 25-year-old still put up big numbers, averaging 29.2 points, 8.8 rebounds and 5.6 assists per game during the series, but it wasn’t enough for his squad to get the job done against the best team in the NBA.

The conversation Jennings had with other members of the podcast was purely hypothetical, and there’s no reason to believe that Doncic and Kidd have any sort of cracked relationship. However, the Mavericks would presumably love to see Doncic take a step forward on the defense, and he may need to be challenged by someone in order for that to happen.

Doncic and star teammate Kyrie Irving will remain under contract for Dallas in the 2024-25 season, so the team should have an opportunity to make another deep playoff run. But with Doncic being the team’s most important piece, he may need to show some signs of growth in order for his squad to get closer to the promised land.

As an organization, the Mavericks are still looking for their first NBA title since 2011.

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