Mavericks’ Head Coach, Jason Kidd, Joins the Growing List of COVID-19 Positive NBA Coaches

Jason Kidd Tests Positive for COVID-19, Unable to Coach Dallas Mavericks

Jason Kidd, the head coach of the Dallas Mavericks and former All-Star player with the team, has become the 13th NBA head coach this season to test positive for COVID-19. This unfortunate news comes as the Mavericks have been on a winning streak, securing the #5 seed in the Western Conference playoff seeding with a record of 20-18. However, Kidd will be unable to coach the team in their upcoming games, creating a temporary shift in coaching responsibilities.

Assistant Coach Sean Sweeney Takes Over

In Kidd’s absence, assistant coach Sean Sweeney will step in and take over head coaching duties until Kidd is cleared to return after following the necessary COVID health and safety protocols. This transition ensures that the team can continue their journey towards the playoffs without major disruption.

Challenges and Outbreak

The Mavericks have faced their fair share of challenges this season, particularly related to COVID-19. At one point, they had 11 players in COVID protocol, but thankfully, the majority of them have been able to return to action. However, center Kristaps ‘Unicorn’ Porzingis and backup center Boban Marjanovic are still out due to the virus, impacting the team’s lineup and rotations.

Mavericks’ Betting Odds and Division Standings

Despite the adversities faced, the Mavericks have remained competitive. They currently have +4000 odds to win the NBA title in 2022, and +1600 odds to win the highly competitive Western Conference. In their division, the Southwest Division, the Memphis Grizzlies hold the top spot while the Mavericks trail by five games in second place. The Grizzlies are currently the favorites to win the division, with odds of -250, but the Mavericks are not far behind at +175, aiming to secure the division title for the second consecutive season.

Jason Kidd’s Journey

Jason Kidd’s name is familiar to basketball enthusiasts, particularly those who remember his successful career as a professional basketball player. He had two stints with the Dallas Mavericks during his tenure as a point guard, totaling eight seasons with the team. Interestingly, Kidd finds himself back with the Mavericks, but this time as their head coach. Before taking on his current role, he also had coaching experiences with the Brooklyn Nets for a season and the Milwaukee Bucks for 3.5 seasons before being let go in the middle of the 2017-18 season.

A Shakeup and Rebuilding in Dallas

Last offseason, the Mavericks underwent a significant shakeup after experiencing internal conflicts. The longtime head coach, Rick Carlisle, who led the team to a championship in 2011, chose to step down after 13 years in the position. This departure was accompanied by the firing of the team’s longstanding general manager, Donnie Nelson. One key source of contention within the organization involved Haralabob Voulgaris, who led the quantitative research and analytics department. Both Nelson and Carlisle clashed with Voulgaris, which ultimately resulted in their departures. Furthermore, Voulgaris did not renew his contract with the team.

Challenges with Luka Doncic

Upon taking over the coaching reins, Jason Kidd faced the daunting task of navigating a team in turmoil while keeping superstar player Luka Doncic satisfied. Doncic faced his own struggles earlier in the season as he battled weight and fitness issues. Additionally, he endured an ankle injury and battled a bout of COVID-19, causing him to miss three weeks of action. However, he made a triumphant return to the lineup about a month ago, and since then, the Mavericks have experienced a resurgence. Winning their last four games, including a three-game winning streak upon Doncic’s return, the team has found stability and momentum.

Conclusion

As the Dallas Mavericks navigate the remainder of the season amid the ongoing challenges posed by COVID-19, they face both internal and external obstacles. With Jason Kidd’s absence due to his positive COVID-19 test, assistant coach Sean Sweeney will step in to ensure the team’s continued progress. While the journey has been challenging, the Mavericks remain determined to secure a playoff spot and potentially claim the division title once again.

FAQs:

1. Are there any other NBA head coaches who have tested positive for COVID-19 this season?

Yes, Jason Kidd is the 13th NBA head coach to test positive for COVID-19 this season. The ongoing pandemic continues to impact various teams and individuals within the league.

2. How have the Mavericks dealt with the COVID-19 outbreak?

The Mavericks faced an outbreak earlier this season, with 11 players entering COVID protocol at one point. Fortunately, the majority of those players have returned to action, but some, including Kristaps Porzingis and Boban Marjanovic, are still sidelined.

3. What are the Mavericks’ odds of winning the NBA title and the Western Conference?

The Mavericks currently have odds of +4000 to win the NBA title in 2022, and +1600 to win the Western Conference. While they face tough competition, their recent winning streak and determination make them a team to watch.

4. What led to the shakeup within the Mavericks organization last offseason?

The shakeup was prompted by internal conflicts, particularly involving the head coach, Rick Carlisle, and the general manager, Donnie Nelson. Their differences with Haralabob Voulgaris, who led the analytics department, resulted in several key departures.

5. How has Luka Doncic’s season been impacted by weight issues and COVID-19?

Luka Doncic experienced challenges earlier in the season, including weight and fitness issues, an ankle injury, and a COVID-19 infection. However, he has made a successful comeback and played a vital role in the Mavericks’ recent winning streak.

Doug I. Jones

Doug I. Jones

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