In a shocking turn of events, the Los Angeles Lakers have cured their point-guard woes with the acquisition of two-time MVP Steve Nash. Marc Stein of ESPN.com broke the news via Twitter.
Just going up online & via SportsCenter: Sources say Suns have consented to sign-and-trade Steve Nash to Lakers for package of future picks— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) July 5, 2012
The 37-year-old has either led or ranked second in assists in every season since 2005, including an average of 10.7 assists per game in 2012 that ranked second to the Boston Celtics' Rajon Rondo. In case you've yet to grasp a feel for the statistical brilliance of one Steve Nash, the message is just as it seems.
There is no better facilitator in the NBA than the man they call Nashty.
Lakers Nation, meanwhile, needs no introduction. The Canadian superstar's contributions are well-documented, as Nash and the Phoenix Suns eliminated L.A. from the postseason in both 2006 and 2007. The way Nash was able to orchestrate those high-powered offenses is much more important than his history with the Lakers, however, as he has made stars out of frontcourt partners.
Amar'e Stoudemire is the most high-profile example, while Marcin Gortat's career-best 15.4 points per game in 2012 is the latest exhibit. This should be music to the Lakers' ears, as the best pick-and-roll point guard in the game will pair up with the most dominant frontcourt in the NBA.
Most importantly, he'll be playing alongside Pau Gasol; the same Pau Gasol who struggled to score during the 2011 and 2012 postseason due to poor positioning and weak shot selection.
With Nash running the point, expect Gasol to flirt with the 20-point-per-game plateau. Nash is a master at giving his teammates the ball in the proper place in the paint, which should bode well for Pau Gasol as he returns to the form that made him a four-time All-Star.
To put it kindly, Gasol and Amar'e Stoudemire share one terrible trait. Despite their distinct physical advantages, both struggle against physical defenders. Considering Nash made Stoudemire a $100 million man, it's safe to say that Gasol is in for just as much of a breakout season.
The only question is, will he join Nash, Kobe Bryant and Andrew Bynum as All-Stars? If he produces at the level expected of him, the Lakers would be favorites to put forth four All-Stars in 2013.