Stephon Marbury and Jason Kidd were traded for each other in the summer of 2001.
Marbury joined Shawn Marion, Amare Stoudemire and the Phoenix Suns.
Kidd would join the then-New Jersey Nets.
“Jason is the best rebounding point guard in the league,” former Nets president Rod Thorn said after the move.
“He’s All-NBA in defense and we need help on defense. On the whole, I think we helped our team dramatically.”
Kidd had a supporting cast of Kenyon Martin, Kerry Kittles, Keith Van Horn, Lucious Harris and Richard Jefferson. The Marbury/Kidd swap would make the Nets a fierce competitor. After all they made back to back trips to the NBA Finals in 2002 and 2003 against the San Antonio Spurs and the Los Angeles Lakers respectively.
One thing that left some confused in the New York metropolitan area was when Marbury stated that he was the best point guard in the NBA back in 2005.
By then, Kidd was still a Net and Marbury was a Knick.
“Don’t get me wrong, I love Jason Kidd, he is a great point guard,” Marbury told New York media.
“[But] how am I comparing myself to him when I think I’m the best point guard to play basketball? That makes no sense. I can’t compare myself to somebody when I already think I’m the best. ”
“I’m telling you what it is. I know I’m the best point guard in the NBA. I don’t need nobody else to tell me that. When I go on the basketball court, if I start to think about what you all think, I’ll lose my mind. You should’ve asked me, ‘Are you the best point guard in the NBA, then?’ and I’ll tell you, ‘Yeah.’ ”
Many were fascinated by Marbury’s confidence and even questioned it.
On today’s episode of the Scoop B Radio Podcast, I asked Marbury about that asessment from back then.
Check out a snippet from that dialogue below:
Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson: You were traded for Jason Kidd. He came to New Jersey. You went to Phoenix. And I was in college when this was said that you were the best point guard in the NBA. And people scoffed at that. Do you think that was blown out of proportion?
Stephon Marbury: Everything I do and everything I say gets blown out of proportion. So it wasn’t like I wasn’t expecting to be that. If you don’t fell that way, who’s gonna feel it for you?… it is what it is.
Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson:That’s real.
Stephon Marbury: [continuing]… it wasn’t like my game wasn’t speaking, my game was talking!
Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson: Yeah. I think people look at Jason Kidd and looked at him as a more complete point guard. I think people looked at you – and it’s funny because when I looked at your game, you’re a scoring point guard that dished it out. I feel like your prototype was ahead of the curve in an era where everyone was in love with the pass-first point guard. Now, the way that you played IS the standard. Look at Derrick Rose. Look at Kyrie Irving.
Stephon Marbury: You can’t play in the NBA as a point guard if you can’t score. I mean, it is what it is. That’s the game. Who got the ball first? When they take it out, who got the ball first? I think more so I think I played with the most 10-day contract guys in the history of basketball. When I played in New Jersey everybody got hurt. And then when he got traded for me, everybody got healthy. Literally, guys were really hurt with real injuries. So I was in a tough spot but at the same time, I didn’t allow that to stop me from going out and hoopin’. I hooped every night