To say that the Los Angeles Lakers' 2012-13 regular season hasn't gone as planned would be a disturbing understatement. The Lakers are currently 28-30 and 2.5 games out of eighth place in the Western Conference playoff picture.
With that being said, 39-year-old point guard Steve Nash has no reason to regret coming to L.A.
According to Sam Amick of USA Today Sports, Nash recently spoke to whether or not he lamented the trade. After all, Nash was acquired with the intent of winning a title during his first season with the Lakers.
Through all of the underachieving, however, Nash maintains that he's happy in Los Angeles.
"Ten out of 10 times, I make the same decision again," Nash told USA Today Sports on Wednesday. "... it's a great experience to play for the Lakers organization. ... I'm happy here."
"I'm beyond playing for the credit or the adulation. I feel secure in myself as a player. I just want to help this team, regardless of what it means for me personally."
That final line is what matters most.
This is just the second season since 2004 that Nash is averaging fewer than 10 assists per game. The other came in 2009, as Nash tallied 9.7 per contest.
In 2012-13, however, Nash is at 7.1 dimes per contest—his lowest mark since 2000.
Furthermore, Nash currently has a usage rate of 16.6 percent. That's down from 21.5 percent in 2012 and his lowest mark since 2004, when he posted a usage rate of 20.6.
Even without the ball in his hands, however, there are more important factors to acknowledge—Nash's selfless style of play is only a piece of the puzzle.
Closer to Family
There are few things that Steve Nash has yet to accomplish in the NBA. He's a two-time league MVP, an eight-time All-Star, a five-time assists leader and a seven-time All-NBA selection.
The only accomplishments that have eluded him are winning a title and spending more time with his family. Per Amick's previously alluded to report, the latter has been solved.
"I've gotten to see my kids probably four times as much as I'd seen them if I'd have gone back East. That's first and foremost."
For those in need of further evidence, simply ask Nash's agent, Bill Duffy.
"If L.A. wouldn't have worked, I honestly think he would've considered retiring," Duffy said. "He said that three or four times from July 1 to July 5 (during free agency), and I was saying 'If he wants to retire, I have to respect it, but let's piece this thing together so you can get what you want and continue to play.'"
After spending 16 years in the NBA, who can blame him?
Nash is likely to be inducted into the Hall of Fame when he decides to call it quits. He's also capable of playing at an All-Star-caliber level at the age of 39, which suggests that he could be dominating if he wanted to.
This begs a simple question: With Nash receiving the opportunity to play in the NBA and spend time with his children simultaneously, what is there to regret?
Better Off Elsewhere?
Say what you will about the Los Angeles Lakers' current level of success, but they still own one of the best paper rosters in recent memory. For that reason, one can't help but fear the day that they finally get their act together.
Prior to the sign-and-trade deal that sent Nash to the Lakers, the Raptors had offered him a three-year contract. Had he ended up in Toronto, there is no guarantee we would have seen the Rudy Gay trade.
Even if we had, is anyone going to argue that Toronto could compete with the Miami Heat at this moment?
The Lakers may be in disarray, but they still present Nash with a better opportunity to win a title than the alternatives. Paired with the fact that Nash is close to his family, there is no better fit for the 39-year-old point guard.
So why would lackluster results force Nash to lament this life-altering trade?
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