At the 9:51 mark of the first quarter in tonight’s game against the Philadelphia 76ers, Jason Kidd of the Dallas Mavericks threw a lob pass to Tyson Chandler for his first assist of the night and his 11,000th of his career. With that assist, the 17-year veteran became just the second player in NBA history to reach 11,000 career assists. The 10-time All-Star (1996, 1998, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2007, 2008, and 2010) joins Hall of Famer John Stockton (15,806 career assists) as the only two players to reach the 11,000 assist plateau.
Kidd finished the game with eight assists and 10 points as the Mavericks defeated the 76ers 99-90.
The 37-year-old is in his second stint with the Dallas Mavericks, who selected him with the second overall pick in the 1994 NBA Draft. Kidd made an immediate impact his rookie season and shared 1995 Rookie of the Year honors with Grant Hill. In his rookie season, he recorded double-digit assists in 22 games and helped lead the Mavericks (who had won just 13 games the prior season) to a 36-win season-a 23 game turnaround.
After recording 1,590 assists with Dallas, Kidd was traded to the Phoenix Suns in 1996. It was in Phoenix that Kidd got his first taste of team success. During his five-year tenure with Phoenix, Kidd and the Suns made it to the playoffs five straight seasons. While in a Phoenix Suns uniform, Kidd led the NBA in assists three times (1999, 2000, and 2001) and dished off for 3,011 assists.
During the summer of 2001, Phoenix traded Kidd to the New Jersey Nets. In his first season in New Jersey, Kidd helped lead the Nets to their first NBA 50-win season. In 2002 and 2003, behind Kidd’s leadership, the New Jersey Nets made their only two NBA Finals appearances in franchise history. Kidd led the NBA in assists in 2003 and 2004. During his six years in New Jersey, Jason Kidd recorded 4,620 assists and led the Nets to six consecutive playoff appearances.
In 2008, Kidd returned to his first NBA team when New Jersey traded him to the Dallas Mavericks. In his second stint with the Mavericks, Kidd recorded his 10,000th and 11,000th career assists and moved up to the number two spot on the NBA all-time assists list. With another year remaining on his contract, it is likely that Kidd will record his 12,000th career assist sometime during the 2011-2012 season.
Kidd, who has helped his teams to the playoffs every year since 1996, is currently tied for third on the NBA playoff assists list with Hall of Famer Larry Bird. With his first assist in the upcoming postseason, he will take sole possession of the third spot behind Hall of Famers John Stockton and Magic Johnson.
More NBA Assist Leaders:
Top Five Assist Leaders in NBA Playoff History
Top Five Assist Leaders in NBA History
Information from Basketball-Reference.com’s NBA Career Leaders for Assists, Jason Kidd NBA Statistics, Dallas Mavericks Franchise Index, New Jersey Nets Franchise Index, NBA Career Playoff Leaders for Assists, and ESPN.com’s Philadelphia 76ers vs. Dallas Mavericks – Box Score – November 12, 2010 was used for this article.