At age 39, Steve Nash is no longer the same elite player that captured back-to-back MVP awards in 2005 and 2006, but the veteran point guard remains hopeful that he can be effective and contribute to the Lakers this season and next. As Nash tells Ken Berger of CBSSports.com, retirement isn’t something he’s considering at this point in his career.
“I don’t think so,” Nash said, when asked if he could see himself retiring before next season. “I still feel like I’ve got a lot of life left without basketball so I’m going to try to enjoy it and make the most of these last 18-20 months, whatever it is.”
Nash, who missed 32 games last season, has appeared in five of the Lakers’ six games this year. However, physical ailments forced him to sit out the second game of the team’s only back-to-back so far, and he’s playing just 24.2 minutes per game, his lowest average since 1997/98.
While a few trade rumors have swirled around Nash in the early going, there’s little chance of the Lakers finding a suitor for the Canadian. His $9.3MM salary this season, along with the $9.7MM he’ll earn next year, significantly reduces any value he’d have as a trade chip. If the Lakers want to remove Nash from the picture next summer as they look to claim a huge chunk of cap space, the club would likely have to release him, spreading out his cap hit using the stretch provision.