It appears that the issue of Steve Nash's health won't be going away for the Los Angeles Lakers anytime soon. According to a report from Ramona Shelburne of ESPNLosAngeles, Nash is still unable to jog or do on-court activities without pain in his left leg.
This isn't great news for a Lakers team that just can't seem to live up to expectations early in the season.
Those expectations were largely built around the exciting additions of Steve Nash and Dwight Howard in the offseason. While Howard has done his part, playing through back pain to give the Lakers a dominating presence in the paint, the Nash part of the experiment remains unseen.
After a poor 1-4 start, the Lakers were quick to fire Mike Brown. The only problem with that is that the coach they brought in to replace him, Mike D'Antoni, needs a point guard like Nash to get the most out of his offensive system.
The history between Nash and D'Antoni has been well covered. Both have experienced the best successes in their respective careers when paired with each other.
When looking at the Lakers' decision to go with D'Antoni as the man to lead this roster, the thought of pairing Nash and D'Antoni once again had to one of the top reasons.
Since Brown left, the Lakers are 5-3 with D'Antoni and Bernie Bickerstaff coaching the team. While this is an improvement, it still isn't exactly what the Lakers had in mind this season.
What the Lakers really need to turn the corner is a healthy Nash. Until we see what this team can do with a healthy Nash running D'Antoni's offense, the Lakers will remain the NBA's greatest anomaly.
The good news for Lakers fans is that while Nash is getting up there in age (he's 38), he's been durable throughout his career.
As Nash himself points out, this is the longest stretch of games he has missed in 10 years.
I haven't been out this long in 10 years. It's hard. It's frustrating. I worked really hard this summer and through training camp this year. I was just starting to come into myself. Now how long is that going to get that back when I'm healthy. It all plays in your mind and makes you really eager.
The Lakers need Nash to get back as soon as possible. Darius Morris and Chris Duhon have been admirable substitutes and will make good options off the bench for the Lakers, but neither brings the type of skill set and familiarity with the offense that Nash brings to the table.
If Nash isn't able to get healthy as the season goes on, the Lakers are in real trouble going forward.
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