Knicks 'zzone

Newsday's Al Iannazzone takes you inside the Knicks.

Jason Kidd fitting nicely with Knicks, sinks Nets

Jason Kidd celebrates his game-winning 3-pointer with J.R.

Jason Kidd celebrates his game-winning 3-pointer with J.R. Smith during a game against the Nets during a game at Barclays Center. (Dec. 11, 2012) (Credit: Jim McIsaac)

Jason Kidd spearheaded every win the Nets had over the Knicks from the 2001-02 season through 2007-08 and Tuesday night he showed his old team what they could have had.

Kidd was on the Nets’ radar over the summer. But they never truly pursued him. They went in a different direction and ended up with C.J. Watson, who is a good backup and much younger. Kidd appeared heading back to the Mavericks, but picked the Knicks.

It's worked out for Kidd and the Knicks.

Had he gone to the Nets he might not have played as much as he does with the Knicks. He’s a starter and closer and probably should remain one after Iman Shumpert returns from his injury.

It’s obvious how much Kidd, even at 39, means to the Knicks, how critical he’s been in many wins, including Tuesday night’s 100-97 thriller over the Nets.

On a night Carmelo Anthony scored 45 points, Kidd hit the game-winning three, which speaks to what he’s become as he’s gotten older.

He is knocking down threes at a consistent clip. He’s hitting 52.8 percent on the season and was 6-for-8 from deep last night.

Remember, this was a guy who was called ‘Ason plenty early in his career because he didn’t have a J. But he has developed one through the years.

"I’m putting in a lot of time, getting up a lot of shots and my teammates trust in me,” Kidd said.

Kidd’s competitive nature, drive, leadership and basketball smarts set him apart, though.

“He has a brilliant basketball IQ,” Tyson Chandler said.

On Twitter, J.R. Smith called Kidd, “The Greatest PG to Ever Play The Game!”

Smith later tweeted: “Just in case y'all didn't know magic played with 2 Hall of Famers! #justsayin “

The bottom line is Kidd is proving he can still impact in a big way a team at 39 and the Knicks are happy Kidd left Dallas for New York – Manhattan, not Brooklyn.

Tags: Jason Kidd , Tyson Chandler , J.R , Smith , C.J. Watson , Knicks , Carmelo Anthony , Iman Shumpert

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