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Jason Kidd: "I felt like I was home, I really did"

Jim McIsaac

In an exclusive interview with Mike Lupica Thursday morning, Jason Kidd spoke of how nervous he was on Monday as he arrived at PNY Center in East Rutherford for his interview with Billy King, the interview that would set the stage for his hiring as Nets coach. Then, as he got out of the car, things changed.

"I felt like I was home, I really did," Kidd said. "I felt like I was home all over again once I was inside my old practice facility. This was the place where we practiced when we made our runs to the Finals. Whatever nerves I felt on the way over there, they really did settle inside me once I walked up the stairs."

According to reports, it was Kidd's "aura" or "supreme confidence" that impressed the Nets brass which at one point included Mikhail Prokhorov on the phone from Moscow.

But, Kidd tells Lupica, pursuing the Nets vacancy wasn't on his list of things to do when he thought of retiring ... with two years left on his contract with the Knicks. Golf was. It was his agent who suggested that the two of them start thinking about the future now rather than later. Jeff Schwartz certainly knew what was going on with the Nets. He represented Deron Williams, C.J. Watson, Tyshawn Taylor, Mirza Teletovic and Jerry Stackhouse last season.

"I thought to myself, all right, ‘let's take a look at your resume, Jason,’" he told Lupica. "’You have no financial background. You have basketball, that's what you have, for your whole life.’ So next was going to be basketball. Jeff started to put out some feelers. Obviously one of his first calls was to Billy. And then things started to move up warp speed after that."

By Monday, he was back at the PNY Center. By Wednesday, the job was his. Of course, not everyone believes Kidd will be the success he and King think he will be. Punditry ran wild before Thursday's press conference.