He’s missed 37 games (35 straight), but the veteran floor general may return to the court next Tuesday, according to Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times via Twitter.
Although that’s good news for head coach Mike D’Antoni—who has used 21 different starting lineups to compensate for injuries—fans would be wise to temper any and all expectations relating to the two-time MVP.
Simply put, Nash is no longer the player he was with the Phoenix Suns and Dallas Mavericks. The 39-year-old’s body has started to betray him since moving to Los Angeles. In just six games played before shutting things down to rehab his back, Nash averaged 6.7 points, 4.8 assists and 1.5 rebounds for a player efficiency rating of 6.58—league-average PER is about 15.
Frankly, Nash looked like a shell of himself. There’s no reason to believe he’ll suddenly return to form, but the Lakers can still set expectations at an appropriate level prior to his return date.
The pick-and-roll maestro should still be able to accomplish some goals during his comeback.