NEWARK, N.J. -- Jason Kidd got his first look Saturday at the temporary home of his former team, and he couldn't help but wonder how long the building with a picture of Martin Brodeur on the side will remain the temporary home of the New Jersey Nets.
After all, Kidd was with the Nets back when they were talking about making their move to Brooklyn by 2007.
Now, four and a half years later, the new arena in Brooklyn is no more than a jumble of construction equipment, steel beams and poured concrete, still a long way from completion -- although the Nets insist it'll be ready for the start of the 2012-13 season.
In the meantime, the Nets are toiling in a building so cold that Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle took one look at the industrial strength propane space heaters in the hallway outside the visitors locker room at the Prudential Center and said "Look, the back of the Batmobile."
"Unless it’s built, you can’t believe it. That’s just the nature of the beast," Kidd said. "They’re saying it takes two years. Well, I heard the same thing when I was here. I don’t know how long I’ve been gone (35 months), but you can see how long it takes for things to be built. And if it’s not built, they’re gonna be playing here. I don’t know if Newark is an attraction for a star player."
Consider that quote part of the eulogy on the Carmelo Anthony-to-New Jersey Nets trade that died a sudden death earlier this week when Mikhail Prokhorov pulled the plug on the three-team trade talks between the Nets, Nuggets and Pistons. (Prokhorov was in attendance Saturday night and extended an invitation to Mark Cuban, the man who earlier this season called him a derogatory euphemism for a cat, to watch the game together from Prokhorov's suite. Cuban visited Prokhorov at halftime.)
Anthony is trying to leverage his way into being traded to the New York Knicks, and his distaste for the very notion of signing an extension with the Nets was one of the factors that ultimately led to the deal's demise. As outlined in this news story by ESPN colleague Michael Mazzeo, Kidd said he has not spoken with Anthony about his trade options. But if he had, he'd have advised him to stay in the Western Conference if he values winning a championship over living in a large metropolis. "In the West, everyone went East last summer," Kidd said. "Dirk was the only one who stayed."