In a stunning development, Steve Nash will be be running the point for the Los Angeles Lakers next season
Sources told ESPN.com that Nash, with the New York Knicks also pressing hard to complete a similar sign-and-trade deal, was swayed to join the Lakers after a determined push from Bryant and because the move keeps him in the title hunt and allows him to stay in close proximity to his three children in Phoenix.
Nash will receive a three-year deal in excess of $25 million, sources said, because the Suns ultimately agreed to sign-and-trade him to the Lakers, who can absorb Nash via the trade exception they created by dealing Lamar Odom to the Dallas Mavericks in December.
The Suns will receive 2013 and 2015 first-round picks and 2013 and 2014 second-round picks from the Lakers, according to the Arizona Republic.
The move fixes a gaping hole in the Lakers lineup. They now have a point guard who can find Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol in their comfort zones while also providing space for Kobe Bryant with his shooting. The Lakers also have a second leader on the team who will have Kobe Bryant’s respect.
There is, though, a risk involved. Nash is 38 years old. And while he keeps himself in phenomenal shape and spirit, the human body can only take so much. There is a risk that Nash’s body and skills will decline. There is also the matter of matching up against the West’s elite. Does Nash make a Lakers-Thunder series more even?
It’s a real interesting move for the Lakers. It’s also an interesting move for the Suns, who get four draft picks of questionable worth. The 2015 pick could be interesting, I suppose, if Kobe and/or Nash retire before then and the Lakers fall in the standings. The Suns, and their owner Rob Sarver, are back in the world of cap space and building through the lottery. I’d love to give Suns fans something be hopeful for, but I can’t. You’re going to watch Nash lead the Lakers to a 2, 3, or 4 seed while you battle for the 2, 3 or 4 slot in the lottery.
Now the question is… are the Lakers setting up for another move?