Lakers Steve Nash smiles as he plays in the Lakers season opening game against  Dallas

Steve Nash suffers bruised shin, to be re-evaluated Thursday


Wednesday night, in the second quarter of the Lakers second ugly loss to start the season, Steve Nash and Blazers rookie Damian Lillard collided and Nash was clearly hurt, heading to the locker room.

He came back out for the second half, but it quickly became clear that he was not right and he played just 1:16 before heading back to the locker room.

The Lakers are calling it a shin contusion and saying they don’t know if this will keep him out of Friday’s game against the Clippers. Nash will be re-evaluated on Thursday.

Nash said he wants to play but even he has no idea, as reported by Dave McMenamin of

“I guess I wouldn’t want to say right now (whether he will play) but I’m definitely hopeful,” Nash told reporters after the game….

“It was sore but I went out to try and play and then I planted on it and it just kind of gave out on me,” Nash said. “It was sore and functionally I couldn’t plant on it, or push off on it, or accelerate.”

Nash had only 2 points and 4 assists in his limited play. While it didn’t seem like it to Lakers fans, the offense actually was better Wednesday night, putting up 106 points and scoring 113.1 points per 100 possessions. That will get you wins most nights… if you play any defense. But that has done the Lakers in two games in a row now — the Lakers gave up 108.7 points per 100 possessions to Dallas and then 113.1 to Portland. Keep playing like that over the course of the season and it would be one of the very worst defenses in the NBA (Charlotte was worst in the league at 110.4 last season).

Is DeMarcus Cousins MVP worthy? “It’s mine to grab”

DeMarcus Cousins

Last season, DeMarcus Cousins received zero MVP votes (the same as every year of his career). Even though he averaged 24.1 points, and 12.7 rebounds a game, which was enough to get him his first All-Star berth, MVP is another thing entirely. Only players on winning teams tend to draw the attention of MVP voters.

This season, can Cousins — arguably the best center in the game — get in the conversation?

He thinks it’s more than just that, he told Kevin Ding at Bleacher Report.

The topic is the 2015-16 NBA MVP award and whether it could be reachable for DeMarcus Cousins.

“Reachable, man?” Cousins told Bleacher Report, his voice rising high. “It’s mine to grab.”

As noted above, the only way Cousins gets into the conversation — fair or not — is if the Kings are in the playoffs (at the very least). He understands that.

“It’s going to take a full team effort,” Cousins said. “I’ll try to play at a high level and bring my team along with me.”

Vlade Divac built a Kings’ team designed to start winning now — as you would expect from a team a year away from moving into a new arena they need to fill. Owner Vivek Ranadive is not about selling hope anymore, he wants to sell wins.

I think Cousins can help provide that.

I’m less sold on the cast around him being able to help.

PBT Extra bold prediction preview: Markieff Morris will be a happy Sun

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After a bumpy season where the he fought with Suns coaches, then a summer where he and his twin Marcus felt they were blindsided by a trade, Markieff Morris has been plenty vocal about his unhappiness in Phoenix. To the point it has cost him some serious cash.

So what should we expect from Markieff Morris’ upcoming season?

Relative calm, I tell Jenna Corrado of NBCSports in this latest edition of PBT Extra previewing the NBA season.

The reasons are twofold. First, he has to realize the Suns aren’t trading him anyway (especially not while he publicly demands a trade, lowering his trade value). Second, can you imagine how new locker room leader Tyson Chandler is going to react to that? Chandler was brought in to fill a leadership void in the locker room, and you can bet he will make his displeasure at such team-disrupting antics known.

Still not sure if that’s enough to get the Suns to the playoffs.