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Saturday, June 6, 2020

Articles tagged: Steve Nash

Mike D’Antoni defends Steve Nash against retirement talk

Steve Nash LakersLos Angeles Lakers point guard Steve Nash cannot seem to stay healthy. Considering he will turn 40 in less than three months and is in his 18th NBA season, that isn’t exactly a surprise. On Monday, the Lakers announced that Nash will be sidelined for at least two weeks with nerve issues in his back. The veteran also dealt with neck pain during the offseason.

With the Lakers looking about as bad as most of us expected, some have wondered if Nash will ponder retirement. Head coach Mike D’Antoni fluffed some of that chatter off earlier this week.

“We’re not going to debate it or talk about it,” he told reporters, via Mark Medina of Inside the Lakers. “He’s going to try to get ready and try to play. That’s about it. It’s simple for us. If anybody has followed basketball the last 10 years, you would know he is one of the best in the game and the best ambassador of the game. If that doesn’t build you equity, so be it. Then you don’t follow sports.”

Nash may be an “ambassador” for the NBA, but he can’t play forever. He missed 32 games last year with a variety of injuries and it is starting to look like he could miss more this season. Still, D’Antoni seems to think he has more than enough left in the tank.

[Related: Pau Gasol is concerned about Steve Nash’s health]

“He’s only (6-foot-3) and one of the best screen setters in the league,” D’Antoni said. “He battles every second. He gets hit, knocked around and he’s always battling something. His back has never been good. He’s in the middle of a remarkable career. You can’t doubt what he’s done. There will always be questions in should he do this or do that. That’s normal. But I’m just happy I’ve been able to coach him.”

Again, I don’t think anyone is doubting what Nash has done. The problem is he came to the Lakers to try to win a championship, and that is very unlikely to happen. Unless Kobe Bryant returns to his 2006 form when he’s done rehabbing his Achilles injury, LA is going nowhere. With that in mind, Nash has very little left to play for.

Pau Gasol concerned about Steve Nash’s health

Steve Nash LakersLos Angeles Lakers point guard Steve Nash has been battling injuries throughout the offseason, the latest of which is neck discomfort. He was held out of the second half of LA’s preseason game against the Utah Jazz on Tuesday night. The Lakers’ bench has looked solid, and the addition of Nick Young should help the team’s backcourt. However, Nash is a veteran who is expected to be the quarterback of Mike D’Antoni’s offense.

Very few people expect the Lakers to make a deep playoff run this season, but you can never count out a team that is led by Kobe Bryant. That being said, Nash will turn 40 this season and seems to be having trouble staying healthy. Even teammate Pau Gasol expressed concern.

I don’t see why Nash would be pushing himself in practice if he was hurt, although the fact that Gasol is openly concerned is certainly somewhat alarming. The Lakers are going to have to get healthier as the season progresses. With Nash, Bryant and Gasol turning 40, 36, and 34 — respectively next season, that will be no easy task.

Steve Nash didn’t think Lakers had chance of signing Dwight Howard before meeting

Steve Nash LakersFrom the sounds of it, Dwight Howard’s mind was already made up well before free agency began that he was going to leave the Los Angeles Lakers.

Steve Nash appeared on “Mason & Ireland” on 710 ESPN LA Tuesday and said there wasn’t much optimism for the Lakers heading into their meeting with Howard after free agency began, but he felt like the meeting went well.

“It was good,” Nash said of the meeting. “Frankly, I thought before the meeting we didn’t really have a chance. I’d like to think that after the meeting we had a chance.

“Ultimately, I think Dwight wasn’t comfortable here and didn’t want to be here. If he doesn’t want to be here, there’s no point for anyone to be here. So we wish him the best and move on.”

Nash also told Mason and Ireland that he didn’t feel like Dwight was comfortable in the pick and roll offense. Nash termed the Lakers’ season “a disaster in many ways,” and noted all the injuries they had. He says he went through health problems, Howard was recovering from back surgery, and Pau Gasol had foot and knee problems. But Nash was unable to identify one singular factor that may have led to the team’s struggles.

Nash said the Lakers “never found that confidence as a team” and “never found that commonality.”

There were many reports before Howard took his meetings that the Houston Rockets were the favorites to land him, so this might not be a big surprise. But it is interesting to note that the Lakers felt that vibe from Howard, which probably explains why they made the uncharacteristic big effort to get him back.

Steve Nash seems frustrated with Dwight Howard and his lack of production

Steve-Nash-Dwight-HowardSteve Nash played through a number of frustrating seasons with the Phoenix Suns, but he rarely ever said much about it. Nash has always been one of the more quiet players in the league, so when he says something that can be construed as a complaint about a teammate it’s fairly notable.

Nash and Dwight Howard, the Los Angeles Lakers’ two biggest offseason acquisitions, have not been able to build any type of chemistry this season. Both have battled injuries which hasn’t helped their growth, but the frustration is obvious. Nash confirmed that it exists over the weekend.

“We’d like to get him in the pick and roll more,” Nash said Sunday, via the Orange County Register. “I think that’s how he was really good in Orlando. He’d pick and he’d dive and they’d swing and put it in to him, so he could get deeper catches and the help side has a more difficult time coming to him.

“I don’t know. It’s been difficult really to get him into that game – running into pick and rolls, diving hard, looking for the ball. We really haven’t found that rhythm from him yet.”

(more…)

Steve Nash wipes armpits with towel; Metta uses it on his face (Video)

Gross gross gross gross gross gross. Of course the only thing more gross than Metta World Peace using the same towel for his face that Steve Nash used to wipe his armpits is the Lakers’ record these days, but that’s besides the point. I’m guessing this isn’t what Dwight Howard had in mind when he said the Lakers needed to develop more chemistry.

steve nash metta towel

H/T Busted Coverage

Steve Nash: Lakers are lacking chemistry

Steve-Nash-LakersThe Los Angeles Lakers have improved since their horrendous start to the month of December, but they still do not look like the championship contender most experts expected them to be before the season began. Steve Nash has averaged almost 10 assists per game and his return from injury has helped, but L.A. has still played inconsistently both on offense and defense.

The Lakers lost to the Philadelphia 76ers on Tuesday, once again dropping their record (15-16) below .500. After the game, Nash said a lack of chemistry has been the main issue.

“We’re struggling to make the kind of connectivity it takes to make a team a team,” he said, via the L.A. Times. “We look like a bunch of guys trying to learn each other.”

As a team, the Lakers shot 39.4% from the field in the 103-99 loss to Philly. Shooting has been an issue, but that could stem from a lack of chemistry. Guys are still getting used to one another, and it would stand to reason that Nash needs a little more time to know when and where his teammates like the ball.

While L.A. has been nothing shy of uninspiring all season long, it’s important to remember that the Miami Heat had similar struggles during the regular season when LeBron James and Chris Bosh first joined Dwyane Wade. Miami went on to reach the NBA Finals that season and win the title the following year.

Anytime you piece together a team of superstars, there are bound to be growing pains. When some of those pieces are well into their 30s, it can take even longer to grow. Should Lakers fans be nervous? I would be, but there’s no need to hit the panic button just yet.

Steve Nash reportedly received guarantee he would get to play with Pau Gasol

We all know Steve Nash agreed to join the Lakers via a sign-and-trade deal last summer to give himself a shot at capturing his first NBA title. What may come as somewhat of a surprise is how badly he supposedly wanted to play with Pau Gasol. While I’m sure the prospect of playing alongside future Hall of Famer Kobe Bryant was exciting, Nash was reportedly given a guarantee Gasol would not be traded.

“Ignore any and all trade talk about Pau Gasol because the Lakers landed Steve Nash by promising him he would get to play with Gasol,” a source reportedly told Comcast’s Ric Bucher. “Nash made it a prerequisite for passing on offers from Toronto and the Knicks that Pau would be around.

“Conceivably, once Nash gets back and actually plays with Gasol, the Lakers could continue to struggle and Nash re-thinks his position. But as of right now, one of the enticements that brought Nash to LA was the big Spaniard and the organization would have much bigger problems than they already have if they backtracked on their promise to keep Gasol in the fold.”

This type of handshake agreement is not unheard of. When Chris Paul agreed to go to the Los Angeles Clippers, he was reportedly given a guarantee that the team would retain restricted free agent DeAndre Jordan, and they held up their end of the deal.

While it would certainly be in the best interest of the Lakers to keep their 38-year-old point guard happy if they want to stop pooping their big boy pants, I doubt they would turn down an enticing offer for Gasol simply to keep their word — especially if the team continues to struggle. Doing what is best in the long-term interest of the team is always the priority.