4. Jason Kidd
Jason Kidd was already 39 when he signed a three-year deal with the Knicks in 2012. His place on this list was not as much earned by his own doing as by the Knicks’ coaching and managing of his game.
After a long and successful career, Kidd would have been perfect as a mentor and backup point guard. Instead, he started 48 games and averaged 26.9 minutes per game in his first and last season in New York, including a one-month stretch in December when he had to play almost 33 minutes per game.
His scoring, efficiency, and assists had been going down for a couple of seasons already but sank to 6.0 points on 37.2% shooting from the field and 35.1% shooting from three with 4.3 rebounds, 3.3 assists, and 1.6 steals per game. These stats are not necessarily bad — for any regular role player they would be solid — but it is a big step down from what Kidd produced when he was still in his prime.
Obviously, it is not fair to expect a 39-year-old player to still be at his best, but if Kidd hadn’t been so overtaxed in the regular season, his numbers might have been better, and he probably would not have flamed out in the playoffs.
It seems he was not supposed to be a starter anymore, which is no critique of Kidd. Not all players even play as long as he did, and after 19 seasons, it was not fair to expect Kidd to carry such a heavy load for the team.
Feeling the heavy minutes, Kidd retired in June 2013 after just one season of his three-year deal with the Knicks.