- Tim MacMahon, ESPN Staff Writer
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DALLAS -- Mark Cuban might have beef with Jason Kidd, but the Mavs’ new point guard has nothing but respect for the man he is replacing.
In fact, Darren Collison has so much respect for Kidd that he chose not to wear No. 2 in Dallas.
“I don’t feel like it’s necessary for me to wear No. 2,” said Collison, who wore No. 2 for UCLA, the New Orleans Hornets and the Indiana Pacers. “I just want to give that respect to him. I respect him as a player. Any young player looking up to Jason Kidd will tell you that he’s been helpful. And you know Jason Kidd has definitely been good to this organization, as well.”
The number was certainly available for Collison. Cuban said recently on ESPN Dallas 103.3’s “Ben and Skin Show” that there was “no chance” the Mavs would ever retire Kidd’s number after he had an 11th-hour change of heart, rescinding his verbal commitment to re-sign with the Mavs to take the same offer from the New York Knicks.
That left the Mavs, who were unsuccessful in their early July bid to bring Deron Williams to Dallas despite Kidd’s recruiting assistance with his golf buddy, scrambling to find a starting point guard. They recovered rather well, acquiring Collison along with defensive-minded wing Dahntay Jones in backup center Ian Mahinmi’s sign-and-trade deal with the Pacers.
Collison, who has career averages of 12.1 points and 5.2 assists, chose No. 4. He has no attachment to the number that Michael Finley wore so well for the Mavs … yet.
“I’m going to make it a good number,” Collison said. “Right now, it doesn’t look too well because everybody is so accustomed to seeing me wear 2, but I’m going to make it look like it’s a good number.”