The only reason Steve Nash didn’t retire when nerve issues forced him out for the season before it even began was because the Lakers asked him not to make an announcement so that the team could find a taker for him on the trade market, team sources tell Bleacher Report’s Kevin Ding.
Here’s more from Los Angeles:
- Having so many players on expiring contracts makes for a motivated bunch of Lakers, but there are downsides to that pressure, too, and chemistry is difficult to foster under the circumstances, as Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News examines.
- The Lakers were in a similar spot last season, but Wesley Johnson credits Byron Scott for holding the team accountable, a quality he believes former coach Mike D’Antoni lacked, as Johnson asserts to Medina for the same piece.
- Nash’s work with rookie guard Jordan Clarkson has been paying off for both the player and the team, Baxter Holmes of ESPNLosAngeles.com writes. “His passing has gotten much better,” Scott said. “We always talk about the little pocket pass; he’s starting to make that with ease. You start seeing some of the stuff that Steve is talking with him about. Sometimes it’s easier to relate to a player like that than it is to us as coaches, because we’re sitting there saying, ‘The pocket pass is open, Jordan the pocket pass is open.’”
- Despite Nash’s private sessions with Clarkson, the veteran has been absent at the team’s games, something Scott would prefer wasn’t the case, Holmes adds. Scott added that he wasn’t sure how Lakers fans would react to Nash’s return to the sidelines, Holmes relays. “I really don’t know,” Scott said “I’ve read some of the blogs which I thought were unfair to Steve. But I don’t know if he wants to put himself in that position. I don’t know how they would react. But I know us as an organization would love it.“
Eddie Scarito contributed to this post.