Tag: Steve Nash

Phoenix Suns v Miami Heat

Report: Cavaliers would have added Steve Nash if he had agreed to buyout from Lakers


Steve Nash made what was a foregone conclusion official by announcing his retirement on Saturday, but before that, he had at least one option to return to the court with a championship contender this season.

Nash already tried to chase a ring or two with the Lakers, and that couldn’t have ended up being more of a disaster.

Things would have been different in a new situation, however, where Nash wouldn’t have been relied upon as heavily to manufacture victories. But from a physical standpoint, he simply wasn’t up to the task.

From Marc Stein of ESPN.com:

League sources told ESPN.com earlier this month that LeBron James’ Cleveland Cavaliers — who happen to have two of the biggest Nash admirers on Earth in their front office, in David Griffin and former teammate Raja Bell — let it be known to longtime Nash agent Bill Duffy that they would love to give the old man a whirl as a short-minute backup to Kyrie Irving if Nash wanted to seek a buyout from the Lakers after the trade deadline passed with no deal.

No chance, though. …

“I think I can [still] have a great game,” Nash said. “But I can’t do it more than once or twice a month.”

Just having Nash around would have been a bonus for the Cavaliers; he could have provided mentorship for Kyrie Irving, and been another veteran voice of leadership in the locker room during what’s expected to be a deep run through the postseason.

But despite the opinions of a certain rabid segment of the Lakers fan base, Nash was loyal to the team he finished his career with, and wouldn’t have even considered going anywhere else — not that his body would allow it, which is why he finally made official what we all knew was coming.

Tributes from other players pour in as Steve Nash announces retirement

Los Angeles Lakers' Nash is interviewed before head coach D'Antoni makes his debut as Lakers' new coach in NBA basketball game against Brooklyn Nets in Los Angeles

You’d by hard-pressed to find a player more respected and better liked than Steve Nash.

Meaning it was not a surprise that in the hours after he announced he was retiring from the NBA the tributes poured in from other players past and present.

And it wasn’t just athletes, the Canadian Prime Minister got in on the act.

Steve Nash makes it official: “I’m retiring”


We knew this was coming. From the moment Steve Nash said he couldn’t play for the Lakers this season we knew this was the end of what had been a Hall of Fame career. The Lakers kept him around as potential trade bait (as much of a longshot as that was), but we knew the days of Steve Nash on the court were over.

Saturday he made it official in an article the Players’ Tribune.

“I’m retiring…

The greatest gift has been to be completely immersed in my passion and striving for something I loved so much — visualizing a ladder, climbing up to my heroes. The obsession became my best friend. I talked to her, cherished her, fought with her and got knocked on my ass by her.

And that is what I’m most thankful for in my career. In my entire life, in some ways. Obviously, I value my kids and my family more than the game, but in some ways having this friend — this ever-present pursuit — has made me who I am, taught me and tested me, and given me a mission that feels irreplaceable. I am so thankful. I’ve learned so many invaluable lessons about myself and about life. And of course I still have so much to learn. Another incredible gift….

I will likely never play basketball again. It’s bittersweet. I already miss the game deeply, but I’m also really excited to learn to do something else. This letter is for anyone who’s taken note of my career. At the heart of this letter, I’m speaking to kids everywhere who have no idea what the future holds or how to take charge of their place in it. When I think of my career, I can’t help but think of the kid with his ball, falling in love. That’s still what I identify with and did so throughout my entire story.

In the article he thanks Don Nelson for pushing him to score more. He thanks Mike D’Antoni for helping change the NBA and giving him the perfect platform. He thanks Dirk Nowitzki, Amar’e Stoudemire, Michael Finley, Alvin Gentry, and Jay Triano among others. He thanks his family. He thanks his fans.

We should thank him.

If you are enjoying the era of great point guard play in the NBA, know that started with Nash. His ability to hold on to his dribble and use it to break down defenses, his use of passing angles to set up teammates helped evolve the game out of the isolation basketball era. What he did with D’Antoni and the Suns helped change the game for the better (every team stole from them, including Gregg Popovich and the Spurs). They helped to the NBA more of a team game again, to get teams playing with pace again. It simply was a joy to watch Steve Nash play. He also was one of the most gracious athletes I ever had the pleasure to cover.

Nash, a two-time MVP, played 18 NBA seasons and will finish third on the all-time assist list. He is destined for the Hall of Fame. It will be a fitting finale to a special career.

One that is now officially over.


Reggie Jackson gets NBA’s – and Pistons’ – second 20-assist game of season

Memphis Grizzlies v Detroit Pistons

Entering this season:

Now, 20-point, 20-assist games come easily – if you play for the Pistons.

Brandon Jennings had one earlier this season, and Reggie Jackson joined the club tonight.

Jackson finished with 23 points and 20 assists in Detroit’s 105-95 win over the Grizzlies.

Since the Pistons acquired him in a trade just before the deadline, Jackson has been up and down, seemingly putting too much pressure on himself from the jump. This final stretch of the season should factor into how much the Pistons offer him in free agency this summer.

Consider tonight a major step in the right direction for Jackson during a difficult season to navigate.

Report: Steve Nash wanted to retire before season, but Lakers asked him not to

Steve Nash

Steve Nash played just 15 games last season and none this season due to injuries.

That has enraged many Lakers fans – especially when Nash golfs – who see him as stealing his $9,701,000 salary. They blame him for not retiring last summer and saving the Lakers money.

Perhaps their scorn is misdirected.

Kevin Ding of Bleacher Report:

The only reason Nash isn’t retired from basketball already, having put it all behind him, is so he could try to help the Lakers.

Nash was ready to call it a career before the season. After deep soul-searching to accept his body does not belong in an official NBA uniform any longer, he wasn’t just out for the season.

He was, and is, done.

The Lakers asked Nash not to announce anything, according to team sources. They hoped they could trade Nash’s $9.7 million salary, not only an expiring contract but also a giant coupon for another club to take and immediately save real dollars via insurance, to get a building block for the Lakers’ future.

I believe the Lakers tried to trade Nash’s contract, including for Rajon Rondo. That was the best way to handle this predicament.

I’m unconvinced Nash actually planned to retire.

Last spring, when his season was already over, Nash famously declared: “I’m not going to retire because I want the money.”

He even doubled down, saying he wouldn’t reconsider even if he regressed physically.

Nash, in a Q&A with Brian Kamenetzky of Land O’Lakers:

Q: Regarding the “money” comment to Grantland, if there a point where you feel like, physically, in the summer if things don’t go well, where you would feel like you just couldn’t uphold your end of the bargain? Would that change your perspective?

Nash: Frankly, I don’t think so. We fight in the collective bargaining to keep guaranteed contracts. I broke my leg playing for this team, and my body’s never been the same. Frankly, I would be lying if I didn’t say I feel that’s my end of the deal. We sign these contracts before (we know what what happens). Maybe it would be a better business if we got paid for what you actually accomplish, but that’s not the business we’re in, and frankly I would have made a lot more money if I got paid afterwards instead of before throughout my career, so it’s just a part of it. It’s a business.

And it sounds crass to sit here and talk about money, knowing that I make more money than 99 percent of the people in the world, but it’s the new normal. That’s my life, that’s my reality, and if I’m honest it’s a part of what you expect when you play in this business. I think it would also be false modesty if I apologized for that, and dishonest. That’s a key part of this business and industry. It gets convoluted because I love to play the game, and if I didn’t have any options, and the Lakers said you can come and play for us but by the way  we can’t pay you, and nobody else was offering me a deal, I would still play. And I would play for free. But not when you have three teams offering you money. (Note: He’s referencing the period before eventually agreeing to terms with the Lakers.) So it gets complicated, and sometimes it looks really ugly to talk about money.

This is Nash, in no uncertain terms, expressing his desire to finish his contract regardless of injury setbacks.

How do you square that with Ding’s report? I suppose Nash could have had a change of heart after specially saying he wouldn’t have a change of heart.

I doubt it, though. I think it’s much more likely someone – Nash and/or the Lakers – is trying to preserve his legacy by reducing fan outrage.