Steve Nash: What Should the Phoenix Suns Do with Him?

Matthew StoneContributor IIJanuary 6, 2012

PHOENIX, AZ - JANUARY 28:  Steve Nash #13 of the Phoenix Suns handles the ball during the NBA game against the Boston Celtics at US Airways Center on January 28, 2011 in Phoenix, Arizona.  The Suns defeated the Celtics 88-71.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Steve Nash and the Phoenix Suns are like peanut butter and jelly—they have been together forever. However, after missing out on the playoffs last season the Suns have a major question to answer. With Nash's contract expiring at the end of this season what should Phoenix do with the two-time MVP?

Nash signed an extended two-year deal two years ago with the vision that he would either be traded this season or let go at season's end. Nash is the franchise. Dealing him would destroy an already disappointed Suns fanbase and would be the unofficial sign that it is time to rebuild in the Valley of the Sun. 

I believe that Grant Hill re-signing this year can give Suns fans hope that Nash will stay for the remainder of the season. But is it really worth it? The Suns are likely to miss out on the playoffs and end up with a top-10 draft pick, and Nash could provide a proven point guard for playoff contenders.

From a management point of view, they MUST deal Nash. As a Suns fan it pains me to hear this, but it is clearly the best option. Just look at Cleveland when Lebron James left and Orlando back in the day when Shaq departed. These teams got nothing, no draft pick compensation, no players, zilch.

Phoenix clearly could get a nice package for Nash, a point guard for the future or draft picks to set them up for the future. Jared Dudley, Channing Frye, Marcin Gortat and Shannon Brown are not the long-term answer, and Phoenix already made a mistake when it dealt playoff hero Goran Dragic to Houston in exchange for Aaron Brooks.

The Suns are not going to win now, and although Nash is a 14 and seven guy on a nightly basis, the wins are not going to be enough for Phoenix to compete. Say you're goodbyes, because this marriage is coming to a depressing end.