Steve Nash Needs to Win with the Lakers to Not Join the John Stockton Club
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As a point guard, there is no greater ability than having the gift of court vision. As the leader of a group of men, the point guard is the captain that runs the show efficiently and effectively in order for his team to be successful.
Possessing the ability to make a team better because of the way you distribute the basketball is an enormous gift.
As one of the top point guards to ever play in the NBA, Steve Nash, who is a two-time NBA MVP, has dominated the position this decade. Similar to another point guard in the 1990s, John Stockton, Steve Nash has not won an NBA championship despite being head and shoulders better than his opposition.
Next season Nash will have his best opportunity to win an NBA championship.
The Lakers addressed a big hole in their roster. After trading for point guard Ramon Sessions from Cleveland, Sessions decided to opt out of the remainder of his contract and test the waters this free agency period.
When Ramon Sessions decided to opt out from his contract, in order to test the free agents waters, the Lakers decided it was time to move in another direction. With a big hole needed to be filled in their roster, they brought in point guard Steve Nash with a trade from the Phoenix Suns, trading away their 2013 and 2015 first-round picks, as well as their 2013 and 2014 second-round picks.
Consequently, playing in Los Angeles will bring big expectations. The Los Angeles Lakers are one of the storied franchises in professional sports, and are always competitive every season.
As a player, the talents of Nash are unheralded.
During his time in the league Nash is a two-time NBA MVP, an eight-time NBA All-Star, a three-time All-NBA First Team Selection and led the league in assists for five years. At 38 years of age it is most likely that his best seasons are behind him. Entering into his 17th NBA season, next year will be Nash's best opportunity to actually reach an NBA Finals, let alone win a title.
The Lakers boast a roster that has more than enough championship experience, as well as NBA All-Star players in Kobe Bryant, Andrew Bynum, Pau Gasol and Metta World Peace.
Though defensively Nash will be a liability guarding most of the point guards in the league because of their athleticism, he will be heavily protected. When opposing guards do get past him and drive into the lane, they will be met by two seven-footers in Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum who will serve as rim protection. With the Lakers bigs clogging up the lane, it will be hard for guards to get past the free-throw line to have open jumpers or drive the lane with their size.
Nash's scoring numbers may take a decline with the numerous options but as a grand facilitator on offense it will not be a problem. Averaging 12.5 points and 10.7 assists a game with no 20-point scorer last season, he had the Suns fighting for the last playoff spot in the Western Conference.
Next season Laker fans can look forward to many pick and pop situations with Gasol and Nash, while freeing up entry feeds into Bynum because of the shooting ability of Gasol. Kobe Bryant will no longer have to worry about being doubled because as a career 40 percent shooter from long distance, Nash will be able to make open shots.
With an aging roster on the Lakers, and having an aging point guard in Nash, they must make haste in order to win a championship. With teams like Oklahoma City who are young and just as talented as Los Angeles, they will be a battle for the Western Conference's elite.
Nash will need to play his best, and turn this bunch of players into a cohesive roster in order to give them a deep playoff run that could result in yet another trip to the NBA Finals.
Going to the NBA Finals will not be good enough for Lakers fans though, winning is everything and seeing an 18th banner being raised is what fans of the purple and gold are craving.
This season the Lakers are reloaded and ready to shoot for the stars. If Nash can find a way to pull this off, he will have won an NBA championship, something John Stockton could not accomplish.
That would be a Hollywood ending, for a Hollywood team.
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