As arguably the most unexpected move of the NBA off-season, the Los Angeles Lakers pulled off a miracle by making a trade to acquire two-time NBA MVP Steve Nash from the arch division rival Phoenix Suns.
This move was unprecedented with the Suns reluctant to trade the future Hall of Famer to a division rival and the Lakers convincing both Nash and Phoenix to make the move.
Reportedly, Kobe Bryant had a lot to do with Nash signing off on the deal. Nash talked about Kobe’s impact on the trade on a Phoenix radio via Derek Page of Hoopsworld.com:
“It was great that [Bryant] signed off and he was so enthusiastic about it and positive. You could feel it.
“He was genuine and excited and that kind of sealed the deal.”
Obviously, Nash wasn’t going to make the move to Los Angeles without getting Kobe’s blessing. This trade may have not been in the cards a few years ago, but Kobe realizes the immediate impact Nash will have on the team with his presence at the point guard position.
It still remains to be seen whether or not this trade actually works out for the Lakers and if Kobe is truly willing to give up control of the basketball to Nash next season. This trade may ultimately end up being a disaster for Los Angeles if Kobe and Nash can’t coexist. Regardless of the outcome, it was a smart move to make with Kobe possibly calling it quits after two more seasons and new blood needed at floor general.
It’ll be interesting to see how the Lakers’ offense will function with such an active point guard running the show. Not since the days of Nick Van Exel has the offense run through the point in Los Angeles.
Another interesting thing to watch next season will be the Lakers’ coaching staff possibly implementing the Princeton offense. Lakers Coach Mike Brown and Kobe have already signed off on the new style of offense. This style will keep the ball moving and will cater to Nash’s game.