Two-time NBA MVP Steve Nash has taken a lot of criticism after joining the Los Angeles Lakers back in the summer of 2012. Nash was expected to come in and be a vital piece to the championship puzzle for the Lakers alongside Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol and Dwight Howard.
Unfortunately, things didn’t exactly go as planned with Nash suffering an injury that would linger for the rest of his career in his second regular season game in purple and gold.
With Nash playing a total of 65 games in three years with the Lakers, the fans have ripped him apart for not retiring early and forfeiting money the team could’ve used to improve the roster. Although Nash takes the bulk of the blame, the Lakers brass actually asked him to stick around this year rather than retiring so they could try to trade his contract, according to Bleacher Report’s Kevin Ding:
The Lakers asked Nash not to announce anything, according to team sources. They hoped they could trade Nash’s $9.7 million salary, not only an expiring contract, but also a giant coupon for another club to take and immediately save real dollars via insurance, to get a building block for the Lakers’ future.
Obviously, the Lakers were unable to move Nash’s deal before the NBA trade deadline last month and as a result will pay the veteran guard what he is owed. An unfortunate move for a franchise that has struggled to get back on track after going all out to build a contender a few years ago.
Although the Nash deal didn’t work out as planned, the future may be bright in Los Angeles at the point guard position. Rookie Jordan Clarkson has turned out to be a steal for the Lakers and has apparently been getting plenty of advise from Nash along the way.
Along with Clarkson making huge strides in his first season in Los Angeles, the Lakers may make a splash in free agency this season to further bolster the backcourt. A high draft pick might also be on the horizon with promising young players like Emmanuel Mudiay, Jahlil Okafor and D’Angelo Russell potentially there for the taking.[divide]