The Milwaukee Bucks formally fired coach Larry Drew on Monday morning but not after they had already agreed to trade two second-round picks for Brooklyn Nets coach Jason Kidd, according to ESPN's Brian Windhorst.
When the leaks came out about the Bucks' plan to snag Jason Kidd away from the Nets and make him their head coach, maybe it made sense that Drew hadn't heard a peep about his job being in jeopardy. Brooklyn owner Mikhail Prokhorov was in talks with Bucks owners Marc Lasry and Wes Edens, and they were handling the private negotiations to send Kidd to Milwaukee, according to ESPN.
Kidd to Milwaukee
Kidd to Milwaukee
Once the news of Kidd's failed promotional ploy in Brooklyn spread, the Bucks' new owners still hadn't talked to their current employee. And they still hadn't said a word to Drew by the time they had agreed to make the trade to acquire Kidd, reports Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski.
Is it cruel and unusual that a coach would be fired after one season on the job? Cruel, maybe, but it's not unusual. Nothing is out of line when a coach wins 15 games with a roster that the team had actually spent money on to win rather than tank.
Bucks blog Brew Hoop was quite critical of Drew, even as it seemed Kidd would be replacing him.
... Drew's one year in town went about as poorly as it possibly could have. A roster that made the playoffs (however unconvincingly) a season ago and was seemed, on paper at least, to have been upgraded over the summer suddenly imploded into a fiery train wreck of awfulness, sticking out as the most magnificently bad among a conference that went the way of a waterlogged hillside.
Still, what happened to Drew won't go over well within NBA circles. Kidd's power struggle in Brooklyn certainly doesn't paint a very good picture of himself, and his willingness to pull the job right out from under Drew's feet only adds to it.
What's happening to Larry Drew--who J-Kidd played briefly for when Drew was an assistant in New Jersey in 03-04--is the ugliest part of this— Chris Mannix (@ChrisMannixSI) June 30, 2014
Lost in this is violation of coach's code: You don't pursue job belonging to someone else. Humiliating end for Larry Drew. Kidd's shameless.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) June 30, 2014
Bucks' Larry Drew is innocent victim of drive-by shooting. (Figuratively, of course.)— Fran Fraschilla (@franfraschilla) June 30, 2014
The media reactions in response to so many of Kidd's actions -- he's only coached one season -- won't help Milwaukee's cause.
The Bucks' new co-owners have likewise gotten off to a sloppy start. Lasry, a former minority owner of the Nets, knew Kidd from his playing days in New Jersey and had also been Kidd's financial adviser. That new owners went after their guy is no surprise, but even Bucks general manager John Hammond reportedly didn't know of the initial interviews between his owners and Kidd.
To hire a coach without notifying and first firing their current coach until his obituary had already been written might not have been the cleanest way for Lasry and Edens to stamp their names onto the franchise.