Steve Nash‘s love of the game stood out above everything else, writes Kevin Ding of Bleacher Report. The Lakers guard formally announced his retirement today at age 41, ending a long career that included two MVP seasons. Ding praised Nash for persevering through pain and becoming one of just four point guards to play in the league at age 40.
There’s more from a historic day in Los Angeles:
- Nash started the NBA’s “golden age” of point guards, contends Amin Elhassan of ESPN Insider [subscription required]. Elhassan worked for the Suns for six seasons while Nash played there and writes that he gained a lot of his basketball knowledge by observing Nash on the court and watching how he prepared himself and teammates for games.
- Lakers coach Byron Scott told Baxter Holmes of ESPNLosAngeles.com he was optimistic about Nash after watching him in training camp. “I was really excited because I did see a lot of the Steve Nash that I had played against and coached against for so many years,” Scott said. However, recurring back pain prevented Nash from ever taking the floor in the regular season, and he has had little contact with the team.
- Free-agent-to-be Wayne Ellington is channeling the grief over his father’s death into basketball, writes Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News. Ellington’s father was murdered November 9th in Philadelphia, and Ellington took a leave of absence that saw him miss six games. He said the experience has strengthened his bonds with the Lakers, regardless of how free agency turns out. “No matter what happens in the future, I will forever have a connection and love for the Lakers,” Ellington said. “The hardest part of my life was this year. The way I was treated means a whole lot to me.”