Lawrence On Nash, Stotts, Gasol

During the All-Star break in New Orleans, the players will ask the league to try and put an end to the “Tennessee Tax,” writes Mitch Lawrence of the Daily News   Every NBA player who visits Memphis for a game against the Grizzlies is subject to the tax, which takes up to $7,500 per season per player.  Somehow, the money totaling $1.5MM per season, ends up in the pocket of Memphis owner Robert Pera.  More from Lawrence’s column..

  • Lakers guard Steve Nash has told a few friends that this season will be his last, even though he still has another season on his contract beyond 2013/14.  Nash will be leaving $9.7MM on the table if he decides to hang them up after this season.  Meanwhile, Nash has denied talk that he is planning on retirement, tweets Mark Medina of the L.A. Daily News.
  • No one with the Blazers is complaining about the job coach Terry Stotts is doing, but team sources tell Lawrence his standing in the locker room would be helped if he made more of a concerted effort to strengthen his relationship with LaMarcus Aldridge.  The big man is nearing the end of his contract and no extension has been hammered out yet.
  • Even as Pau Gasol misses the next ten days or so due to injury, the Suns and Lakers are expected to talk trade.  Los Angeles was open to moving Gasol until they couldn’t get Phoenix to part with one of their first-rounders in the 2014 draft.
  • High-profile attorney David Cornwell, who was part of Alex Rodriguez’s team in the Yankee’s steroid appeal, is among the candidates to head the player’s union.  He’s not considered the favorite, however.
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