On Wednesday night, Jason Kidd bought himself an extra timeout against the Lakers when he told Tyshawn Taylor to bump into him, spilling his drink. The Nets were losing 96-94 at that point and had no timeouts. The clean-up, before Jodie Meeks's second foul shot, gave the Nets some extra time to draw up a final play that almost worked. But did Kidd just think of that on the spot, or was he inspired?
In a video uploaded to YouTube by Mark Cuban himself, it would appear that Jason Kidd had some inspiration. During a similarly late-and-close Maverick's game against Chicago in 2009, there was another convenient spill clean-up, this time between Dirk Nowitzki's free throws. Jason Kidd, playing for Dallas at the time, was right there watching it all go down.
While it's not a spot-on comparison, it's close enough. The Bulls, unlike the Nets, were already down three when Del Harris, an assistant for Chicago, apparently dropped his drink before the second of Nowitzki's free-throws. There was a noticeable delay while the mess was mopped up and Mavs coach Rick Carlisle was clearly annoyed by the extra time afforded the Bulls. A miss on the second shot would have kept it a one-possession game but Dirk sank it after the delay, making it two-possessions.
Whether the dropped beverage was an attempt to ice Dirk or to give coaches time to draw up a final, game-tying shot in the event he missed (or both) it seems pretty clear that Kidd noticed the move and used it later in his career. Kidd told reporters he learned the move "just listening to other coaches," but it could have actually been watching Del Harris.