This is how Steve Nash’s career officially ends, with a single line in a Lakers press release mostly dedicated to an undrafted rookie named Jabari Brown.
When Nash announced his retirement, that was in no way official. That was just Nash describing his plans.
Now, it’s official.
The Los Angeles Lakers have waived guard Steve Nash and signed guard Jabari Brown to a multi-year contract, it was announced today by General Manager Mitch Kupchak.
Nash will still count toward the Lakers’ team salary, as would have been the case if he made the unofficial announcement earlier in the year.
If they hadn’t applied for a disabled-player exception for Nash, which went unused, they could have sought – and likely would have received – cap relief by getting Nash’s injury deemed career-ending on the one-year anniversary of his last game (April 8). But it’s one or the other between the DPE and career-ending injury qualification.
The Lakers signed Brown to a couple 10-day contracts under a hardship to add a 16th player. So, to sign him to a multi-year deal, they had to drop someone. Nash, who’s done, was the easy choice.
Presumably, Brown’s deal is not fully guaranteed for next season. That would allow the Lakers to evaluate him in summer league and maybe training camp before committing.
Byron Scott has spoken highly of Brown, and there’s a decent chance the guard sticks.