Neighbor: Jason Kidd, Basketball Player

Jason Kidd, beware. Your new home is close enough to the Princess Diner to entice Southampton teens looking for their late-night food fix to instead drive by your new Flying Point Road digs and try to snap a picture.

Unfortunately for the would-be celeb stalkers, Kidd may miss the first half of the summer season as his Dallas Mavericks will likely make the playoffs and be in the running for the 2012 NBA Championship.

Not that Kidd needs a second ring to prove his mettle among the NBA elite.

The seasoned point guard won his first NBA championship with the Dallas Mavericks in 2011, as his team deftly defeated the heralded Miami Heat and their “Big Three” of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh.

That first championship was a long time coming for the 18-year NBA veteran who currently holds the record for most games played amongst active NBA players.

A native of San Francisco, Kidd began his NBA career with the Dallas Mavericks when he was chosen as the second pick in the 1994 NBA draft. He immediately made an impact. The team that finished 13-69 the year before went 36-46 in Kidd’s first season. He shared Rookie of the Year honors in 1995 with small forward Grant Hill, then with the Detroit Pistons.

Prior to being drafted by the NBA, Kidd was a standout player at St. Joseph High School in Alameda, Calif. Kidd’s high school basketball coach Frank LaPorte first saw Kidd at a summer youth basketball tournament.

“He did some things out there even that amazed (college) coaches,” LePorte told The San Francisco Chronicle in 1991. “One approached me and wondered if he was a junior (in high school). I said, ‘No he’s a freshman.’ Everybody knew. As an eighth-grader, Jason Kidd was the talk of the town.’’

And as a senior in high school, Kidd captured the national spotlight. He was named the High School Player of the Year by both Parade and USA Today. Practically every major university in the country recruited him, but the decision ultimately came down to Kansas and the University of California, Berkeley. Kidd chose to stay close to home in California so that his parents could come watch him play.

Cal basketball immediately became relevant in the national scene, as Kidd led them to the NCAA Tournament for only the second time in the past 30 years. Along the way, he garnered National Freshman of the Year honors. The team went on to reach the Sweet Sixteen, largely thanks to Kidd’s game-winning shots.

In Kidd’s second—and final—season as a Bear, he led Cal back to the NCAA tournament. At that time, it was the program’s first back-to-back tourney appearances since 1958-1959.

Kidd began his heralded NBA career with Dallas, and he went on to play for the bSuns and New Jersey Nets before returning to Dallas in February 2008. As his career continued, Kidd gained a reputation for his ability to be a game-changing presence on the court.

For example, after joining the Phoenix Suns in a 1996 trade, Kidd led the team to their best record in three years, as they finished 56-26. The Suns went on to make the playoffs in each of Kidd’s five seasons.

During the summer of 2000, Kidd was named one of the three team captains on the U.S. Olympic team in the Sydney Summer Olympics. Under his leadership, Team USA clinched the gold medal.

Upon returning to the United States, Kidd played one final season with Phoenix before being traded to the New Jersey Nets during the summer of 2001, where he orchestrated one of the greatest team comeback campaigns in NBA history.

Prior to accepting Kidd on their roster, the Nets finished the 2000-01 season with 26 wins. Kidd immediately made his presence known, as the team made it to the NBA Finals during his first season.

The Nets also made the playoffs in each of Kidd’s seasons, and he left the team on amicable terms when he was traded back to Dallas in 2008.

Later that year, Kidd earned his second Olympic Gold Medal at the Beijing Games. USA was named the “Redeem Team,” as it hadn’t had a strong showing since the 2000 Games.

Despite his successful tenure in the league, it wasn’t until 2011 that Kidd earned his first NBA Championship. The Miami Heat entered the season as the favorites, but the Mavs took the title in six games.

Throughout his career, Kidd has stayed active in charities off the court.

Kidd founded the Jason Kidd Foundation in March 1999. The organization is committed to youth education, and strives to ensure that all kids have the tools they need to be successful. The Foundation supports numerous organizations, including the Northern Light School in Oakland, the Vogel Alcove, a Dallas-based charity that gives young children of homeless families opportunities to succeed, and the KIPP Truth Academy, which also serves underprivileged children.

“The biggest thing we do with the Foundation is give kids the opportunity to pursue their dreams,” Kidd said in a video on the Foundation’s website.

Kidd married Joumana Kidd in a 1997 ceremony, a union that ended in 2007 when Jason Kidd filed for divorce. He accused his wife of “extreme cruelty.”

The separation came six years after the Kidds were involved in a domestic violence altercation. Kidd was arrested in January 2001 after he allegedly hit his wife. Kidd pled guilty to the charges. He accrued a $200 fine and had to take mandated anger management training.

The two have three children—son Trey Jason and twin daughters Miah and Jazelle.

Kidd married girlfriend Porschla Coleman on Sept. 10, 2011. With the Southampton home a short bike ride to Flying Point beach, the two will likely be spending a lot of time on the East End this summer. Will he hone his basketball skills on the home’s driveway? That’s for the would-be paparazzi to find out.

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