Lakers News: Steve Nash Plans To Return Against Wizards On Friday

UPDATE (10:37 AM)

According to Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Times, Nash will suit up tonight against the Wizards

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Embattled point guard Steve Nash recently detailed his frustration with not being able to remain on the court since joining the Los Angeles Lakers. Despite his rigorous rehab work, Nash has only played in 10 games this season and was deemed unlikely to return by Mike D’Antoni.

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It was then reported Nash has worked to stay in game shape, should the Lakers need him, which now appears to be the case with Jordan Farmar suffering a groin injury. According to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports, Nash will be back in a Lakers uniform on Friday night:

After five weeks on the sidelines, Los Angeles Lakers guard Steve Nash is planning a return to the lineup on Friday night, league sources told Yahoo Sports.

In February, the 40-year-old point guard, who is also the oldest player in the NBA, appeared to be somewhat recovered from nerve damage and hamstring issues that have plagued him since his first days with the Lakers. However, after coming into contact with Kirk Hinrich on Feb. 9, Nash’s nerves were once again set off kilter and he was only able to play 17 minutes in the following game before being shut down.

With the Lakers eliminated from the playoffs, much of the focus has shifted to giving the younger players an opportunity to play extended minutes. Despite being at a completely different stage in his career than several of his teammates, this could be an important stretch for Nash as well. Nash recently admitted some of his desire to return next season is tied to the $9.7 million he is set to receive. The Lakers could however opt to use the stretch provision on the aging point guard and while he would still receive the remainder of his salary over three years, Nash has stated he would then retire.

Kendall Marshall is expected to start in the game against the Washington Wizards, but with the Lakers short handed on true point guards, Nash should see some playing time. Nash isn’t the only player returning to the Lakers, as Jordan Hill and Nick Young are also expected to play.
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