Jason Kidd merits hero's welcome at AAC

DALLAS -- If you've got hard feelings for Jason Kidd due to his sloppy exit from Dallas, get over them.

Jason Kidd could've handled his departure from Dallas better, but his role in the Mavs' 2011 title run should earn him a free pass.

That goes for Mark Cuban and every other Dallas Mavericks fan.

Get off your butts and give the man the standing ovation he deserves when the New York Knicks' starting lineup is announced Wednesday night at the American Airlines Center.

There wouldn't be an NBA championship banner in the rafters without Kidd. His clutch savvy and steady leadership were critical elements to the Mavericks' miraculous 2011 title run. Folks around these parts should forever treat Kidd like a hero, not a traitor -- at least when the sneakers aren't squeaking.

Kidd finished the job during his second stint in Dallas. So what if he didn't finish his surefire Hall of Fame career here?

"He left on great terms with me," Mavs coach Rick Carlisle said. "I was super appreciative of everything he did for me and our organization when he was here. Guys at that point in their career, they have the right to do what they want to do. I could only wish him the best."

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