- The Season's Over -

The Excuses (and the Pressure) are Quickly Mounting for the Phoenix Suns

March 3, 2008

Steve Nash and the Suns seem to be at a lossThis has nothing to do with Shaq. This has nothing to do with Shaq,” repeated coach Mike D’Antoni.

I’m fitting in. I’m swinging the ball to the top and I’m only taking four or five shots a game. I’m just rebounding and trying to fit in,” said Shaquille O’Neal.

We are still learning what we have to do to win games. We’ll be fine. We just caught a team that was called out by their coach and they played very well,” O’Neal also said.

If everyone just sticks with their role, we should be fine.” said… O’Neal.

Right now we don’t have a lot of emotion and we need a little more,” offered Steve Nash.

If I’m Seattle, I’m not going to let Barry go, I’m going to let Donyell Marshall go. Brent’s a guy who is much more productive. Donyell Marshall doesn’t have much more left in the tank. Sam Presti used to be in San Antonio as an assistant. Who knows? I don’t have any proof,” whined GM Steve Kerr after Barry spurned overtures by his Suns and instead chose to resign with the Spurs.

Steve Nash Photo Credit: Icon SMI

Well, I think it’s safe to say the post-O’Neal trade honeymoon is over in Phoenix. The 39-20 Suns dropped to 2-4 since the Marion-for-O’Neal swap after suffering a five-point loss to the improving Philadelphia 76ers Saturday night, and clearly all parties involved are starting to get a little anxious. The fans have been intermittently booing them, opponents are hanging about 113 points a night on them, and suddenly the Golden State Warriors are licking their chops at the realistic prospect of catching them in the Pacific Division standings.

Most NBA observers knew that implementing O’Neal into this franchise would take some time, but the early results are more troubling than most could have predicted. For the past three seasons, this team’s identity was forged in stone: high-flying offensive juggernaut who might not be able to stop anybody, but can make up for it by outscoring them. Now, besides adjusting to the introduction of an over-the-hill big man and scrambling to make up for the loss of their best defender, the Suns can’t even say that’s who they are anymore. The fact is, nobody knows what to make of these Suns yet.

I know it’s easy to pile on the Suns right now after their string of underwhelming performances. And to be fair, three of their four most recent losses came at the hands of Los Angeles (the team that matters), Detroit, and New Orleans, all teams that are entertaining serious championship aspirations, and one of their wins did come over the Boston Celtics, who currently sport the best record in the league.

But we’re having a hard time figuring out how or when the Suns are going to suddenly put a happy face on their current situation. It’ll be no small task for a team that played poor team defense as it was to compensate for the loss of Marion, who may have been cancerous in the locker room but who was the Suns’ only player who consistently competed at a high level on both ends of the court. Trading Marion, who was likely to walk this summer, and getting something in return was the right move, but perhaps doing it for O’Neal wasn’t. They simply don’t have a single intimidating defensive presence in the frontcourt anymore, and unfortunately D’Antoni has never been a coach to emphasize getting stops or to properly get his team to play solid help defense after penetration to the hole inevitably happens.

Can Mike D'Antoni and his staff right the ship?

Phoenix Suns Coaching Staff Photo Credit: Icon SMI

Regardless of how you feel about Steve Nash’s defense (have fun wading into those decidedly charged waters), right now I don’t think he’s as much the problem on D as Amare Stoudemire, who seems to have taken Marion’s trade as approval for him to run up big numbers on offense and to disregard his duties on defense. Oh, he’s scoring like gangbusters, but opposing power forwards are absolutely lighting him up. See Thaddeus Young and Reggie Evans combining for 26, David West scoring 27, Rudy Gay 36, ‘Sheed Wallace 22, etc.

And for all the “give it time” talk coming out of Phoenix, they’re the ones who invited all this scrutiny upon themselves. The minute O’Neal arrived in the desert, dishing out his “hilarious” quips at his introductory press conference, then rising out of his seat and pointing to his championship ring finger to a standing ovation on Valentine’s Day, the Suns were raising the bar very, very high. And maybe that explains the impatience of their fans and the criticisms being levied in their direction before O’Neal has even been there a month.

There’s a lot of offensive talent on that roster, and there’s still plenty of time for Phoenix to figure themselves out and turn it around. But the “we’ll be fine” talk will wear thinner and thinner if their current malaise continues for much longer. The Western Conference is an unforgiving one, and the Suns are tasked with navigating through what could be the most difficult remaining schedule of anyone in the league. The clock is ticking.

Tags: Phoenix Suns, Steve Nash, Shaquille O’Neal

32 Comments »Posted by Brian Spencer on Mar. 3, 2008 at 5:04 pm in ETB Articles, NBA

32 Responses

“The clock is ticking.”

they switch on the panic button by getting shaq…

tsk tsk tsk… hate to call kerr a “moron” at the end of the season…

Posted by: GhiaElcid on March 4th, 2008 at 4:49 am

Shawn Marion for Ben Wallace just makes a lot more sense to me. You don’t get the Marcus Banks dump with the deal, but there’ll be another chance to – a la Nazr Mohammad for the Pistons. Phoenix is going to have to figure this situation out, or else they might end up missing the playoffs.

Posted by: Shinons on March 4th, 2008 at 10:29 am

The 2 time MVP says’ the Suns need emotion…emotion…emotion? If I were a Suns fan and my excessively praised leader made this comment I would be officially scared to death. Wait a minute Steve, are you telling us that the guy who makes everyone around him better encompassing ALL including the ball boy, is relying on emotion? Do you mean to tell me the Suns “digging to China” 2-4 record post Shaq is not enough to motivate you? How can it be 2 time landslide winning MVP, that your unparalleled leadership capabilities are not working with Amare, Shaq, Barbossa, Hill, Diaw, Bell etc. You were given all the credit for single handedly turning the Suns around so what’s up now? O, that’s right emotion.

Hey Steve, listen carefully to what you really need:

1. Shawn Marion
2. Steve Kerr to say I was just kidding and reverse the trade
3. To play Defense…that would be you Steve
4. To play like 2 time MVPs and will your team to victories
5. Time but it is running out with y’alls excuses
6. To Understand Boos: The strange sounds you hear at home are called boos and if you don’t stop them you’ll never find the EMOTION you supposedly need.

Posted by: sdog on March 4th, 2008 at 4:07 pm

as a Pistons fan I always knew how overrated the Suns were. Even when we were down by more than 20 in the first half we’d always come back and destroy them. Billups abuses Nash, as do most elite point guards. Now they’ve gotten rid of their best defender and replaced him with a gigantic lump of dump. prepare to miss the playoffs folks.

Posted by: Kyle on March 4th, 2008 at 5:28 pm

**Posted by: sdog on March 4th, 2008 at 4:07 pm **
another nash-hater… another loser… :)
i think, phx will have a hard time getting a playoff seat… the west is too good… and as of now, the shaq-trade does not look good…

Posted by: GhiaElcid on March 4th, 2008 at 8:16 pm

i cant stress enough how correct sdog is….when you start hearing boos at home, then something must be done…maybe someone can donate Steve Nash a book called “Defense for Dummies”…that might help..

“Right now we dont have alot of emotion”???? “We need a little more”???? are you serious? is he really out of excuses? how about play some defense? how about having less turnovers? i honestly think Nash had a meeting with Amare right after the trade…Amare said “what do you think i should do now?” so Nash replied “well, as a 2 time MVP, i know exactly what to do…play with a little more emotion!!!!” then he added “by the way, now you can score more so i can get more assists and also, why dont you just stop playing defense alltogether and start getting dunked on and lit up every night by average players…it works for me and i still earned 2 MVPs back to back”…”oh, and dont worry about the boos in the crowd, thats natural when you are overrated and start losing”….LOLOL…am i being a hater? no, im just being funny but honest at the same time…emotion has nothing to do with anything at this point…their best defensive player, Marion, is gone…so now, the Suns are wide open so EVERYONE, including their fans, can see that Marion was the only one playing defense on that team…Mr. 2-time MVP, why dont you quit making bullshit excuses and do something about it? quit taking charges and start getting some steals? or is it that you just cant? with Marion gone, now theres nobody to lean on when someone needs to be stopped in the lane or anywhere else…dont blame Shaq…its not his fault, just step up and quit making excuses…2-time MVPS should be able to pep talk emotion into the whole team and explain exactly what its gonna take to win…LOLOLOLOL…sorry, i had to put that in there…. for real though, the turnovers have doubled and the points have gone down..physically, id ont think there is anything they can do…good luck…Nuff’ said…..

Posted by: REALESTVOICE on March 5th, 2008 at 12:54 am

Steve Kerr is a scapegoat, if you take Dan Bickley’s word for it. He said on the Dan Patrick Show this morning that the trade was initially Sarver’s idea, Kerr was “apprehensive” about it, but D’Antoni was gung-ho about it.

Posted by: Kyle on March 5th, 2008 at 3:37 pm

I honestly don’t think the Shaq trade has helped them one bit – and never will. Unfortunately this is pro sports and a certain baby wanted out and got his wish. It’s a sad state pro sports are in…guys demanding to be traded, guys demanding to stay (NHL as of late). It’s a game…have fun, play, make your money, spend/invest your money, develop relationships while there…
I love being on these boards with Nash haters, it’s fun! You guys have no argument other than “he can’t play defense! he doesn’t deserve the MVP!” at no argument that’s viable. Sure, he doesn’t play great one on one defense – every great player has a vice (with the exception of Jordan in my book). Get over it.
The Suns certainly need someone near Marion’s defensive capabilities to help out – Shaq certainly wasn’t the answer to that, he’s not a fit into the Suns system by a long shot. I can see why Kerr wanted him – Playoffs for potential meeting with Duncan or Gasol etc.
That trade has certainly worked Marion…lol. Sure he loves losing, I mean thats what its all about isn’t it??? losing? He’s playing tons of minutes, scoring more (FG% down 4%) and has more TO’s…oh, and he’s losing games…must be fun.
None of you posters can question any NBA players leadership abilities because NONE of you are in the locker room(s) to hear what is said by any of them…so don’t kid yourself into thinking you’ve made a valid point questioning Nash’s leadership – plain and simple, none of us know.

Posted by: Joejacobi on March 5th, 2008 at 6:45 pm

Oh, god. No one is a Nash hater, it’s simply arguing that there were players more deserving than him of those MVP awards. That’s the thing some fans need to realize: saying a guy isn’t the *singular best* in the league isn’t hating on, or trashing a player, so understand that before reading on.

Now, it’s hard to “get over it” when talking about Nash’s defense since it is such a glaring problem. Sure, every player has his faults, but Nash’s is 50% of the game, and it’s a detriment far more glaring than say, Duncan’s inability to shoot free throws.

Just for the record, I think in 2005 Nash deserved the award — mostly by default since the Suns improved so much and no player had a real breakout campaign. 2006 is an entirely different story.

LeBron and Wade both averaged better than 27 points, 7 rebounds, 7 assists a game. Prior to that only Michael Jordan and Oscar Robertson had acheived those marks in a single season, and Jordan had not done it since 1990. LeBron carried a pretty otherwise medicore team to the conference semis and Wade won the NBA Championship, so you I would say both were pretty damn valuable.

Posted by: Kyle on March 5th, 2008 at 8:31 pm

It’s hard to say what each individual takes into account when voting? who is he playing with? scoring? rebounds? FG%? FT%? Does he make Teammates better? Assists? Leadership? Winning games?

I think Nash was worthy both years – However, I would have voted for another player one of the years…yeah, both those guys had phenomenal years – I’m sure they received votes as well.

Posted by: Joejacobi on March 5th, 2008 at 8:57 pm

All good criteria, I would agree with that. It would be nice if there was some kind of tangible quota for this voting. Then again, we’d have nothing to argue about on the ‘Net!

Posted by: Kyle on March 5th, 2008 at 9:34 pm

Correct me if I’m wrong but we are replying to an article about excuses running out on the Suns, right? Therefore, since the Suns 2 time MVP says they need emotion (an excuse) his comments like any other representative of the Suns organization is up for criticism. However, Nashnatics believe anyone critical of their dude has to be a “hater” regardless of the facts supporting otherwise.

In fact, Suns fans have unknowingly come to the realization that their 2 time MVP player is not even close to being what the media has created. During a recent Suns’ home game against the Pistons it was easy to hear via TV: Deeetroooiiit Baaasskkketball, talk about a surreal moment, oh my goodness! Receiving boos at home is one thing but this went way beyond showing temporary displeasure, it was calculated and brutal. Now, do you believe, Detroit fans in mass, got on planes and flew to Phoenix to pump up the Pistons? Have you heard Deetrooit Baaasketbaaalll in Kobe’s house, LeBron’s house or Cp3’s house? Would this have ever occurred in any 2 time or more MVP’s house? Come on, no way, period. Since Nash was and is the unworthy recipient of unfathomable praise, the boos and fans mocking the Suns are directly linked to his leadership, believe that. This may be a hard concept for Nash “lovers” to understand but deeper thinking basketball enthusiasts will grasp it right away. The bottom line is this: you can give away trophies to non defensive players 3 years in a row but you can’t give them Championships, Finals MVP trophies or force their fans to RESPECT them at HOME no matter what excuses are made on an Nash’s or the Suns’ behalf.

Thanks, REALESTVOICE, Kyle, for great posts. Although I disagree with Kyle believing that Nash deserved any MVP award at least he understands we are not judging grid iron greats and thusly DEFENSE and OFFENSE should be evaluated equally when players EARN MVP trophies. REALESTVOICE, I’ve read your posts before and afterwards was upset because you left little to add. Your inclusion of supporting facts make for enlightening reading versus the “stuff” I read from Nash supporters like joejacobi. What a hoot this guy is, no matter how many facts are supported by a real understanding of the game he just continues to make, I’m not going to say DUMB but misinformed posts LMAO.

Posted by: sdog on March 6th, 2008 at 2:43 pm

well, i try to be honest most of the time and i have told myself that from now on i will not get off track and stick to the subject…it seems everyone has their pet peeves and people will defend their favorites til the end of time, so i will now go out on a limb and say that i was actually impressed with the last game the Suns played…everyone that played posted up double figures, 8 players had at least 11 points….well, Linton Johnson didnt but he only played 4 minutes…anyways, this just goes to prove my point from the previous posts…everybody chipped in, everyone contributed what they could…Nash had 13 assists and 12 points, average game BUT what killed them was the TURNOVERS!!! Nash had 5 turnovers and Amare and Shaq also had 5 turnovers each….pitiful, terrible, ugly off target passes, intercepted chest passes….it was bad…and Nashs 13 assists didnt look all that amazing when you consider that Iverson had 12 assists and Anthony Carter (who?) had 11 assists for Denver….in this game Iverson looked like a better point guard because he had 31 points, 12 assists and NO TURNOVERS….i am honestly tired of saying what i think is wrong with the Suns so im going to change my ways and just point out what i think they SHOULD do that might help them win….ummmmmmmmmm….welllllll…….uhhhhhhhhh…….ok that was a bad idea because i really dont have an answer for that…besides stepping up their defense, i dont know what they could do…every player on that team needs to start playing defense….and to those people on here that keep saying that Nashs defense really doesnt matter, well, its not just Nash….when the players on the team individually play NO defense, then the whole team is pretty much screwed…but it should START with Nash, him being 2-time MVP and all….

the Suns right now are #6 in the playoff race but if they dont clamp down RIGHT NOW and start playing some defense, they could miss the playoffs entirely…the West is no joke…any team within 5 games can catch up to you and take your spot in a matter of one week….lets see what happens but that trade totally killed the Suns hope for anything close to a championship…by the way, my team totally handled Detroit yesterday…sorry, had to rub that into this post….Nuff’said

Posted by: REALESTVOICE on March 6th, 2008 at 6:46 pm

Great post sdog, Realestvoice and Kyle (except for that 2005 award thing..lol)I have long said that Marion was the true MVP of the Suns. Any player in the Pro game today, would get tired of being over-looked and under appreciated for their contribution when they know others are given more credit than they’re due.

When a player averages more points, more rebounds, more steals, more blocks and is the go to guy to stop the most prolific scores night in and night out. When you set or tie a record only the great David Robinson has achieved, have the second most double doubles in the league during that same season and get over looked as the key element in the teams turnaround. You might just get a little tired of being under appreciated.

Some people call it being a baby, NOT! Teams trade players that have committed their lives, bodies and families to the franchise and although they are paid well, No one cares when the team does it. Did Shaq ask to be traded? No ones in Pho or Miami is calling him a baby.

People seem to forget that Marion played more than defense, he ran the floor and was just as important as Nash’s passing, he was in position, during the transition game, to receive those passes and as one of the great finishers in the game today, was greatly responsible for all those assists.

The Suns have yet to replace his points, his defense and his ability to rebound, start the break and finish at the same time. People say they got rid of their bast defender, but what people don’t say is getting rid of him exposed even more the horrible perimeter defense of Nash; and Bell combined with an aging Shaq and injury prone Hill isn’t enough to replace it.

So, are they running out of excuses, the clock is ticking, if they don’t change the offensive scheme to resemble the personnel and Nash does not elevate his game to the lofty, undeserved status he’s been given, the Suns will need to re-group.

The closest player to Marion is Hill, unfortunately thats the Hill before injuries. Good luck Suns, you’re gonna need it.

Posted by: Sixnine on March 6th, 2008 at 6:54 pm

I always knew the trade wouldn’t work out. It wasn’t so much as picking up Shaq as it was giving up Marion. True, Shaq makes them a better rebounding team, but isn’t providing anything else. They gave up IMO their true MVP for a guy who is worn out. I can’t say anyone else they should have shot for, but going for an aging guy who’ll probably retire in the next 2-3 years was a mistake.

I hate going off-topic, but I want to make a point about Nash. I don’t believe anyone has ever questioned Nash’s leadership or toughness, they question his D (and rightfully so). I agree that he deserved MVP the 1st season, but like I stated in the “Nash is over-rated” page, Lebron should’ve have won it after Nash’s first MVP both years. He took a team far worse than the Suns(who, if Barbosa started playing like a PG instead of thinking he is the next Kobe when Nash is out would be much better than 4-12) to the playoffs.

All in all, I like the idea of the Suns being bad since I am a Laker fan. If they want to make the playoffs this year, they need to stop playing a 4 man offense and 2 man defense and start playing like a true team.

Posted by: Marcus on March 6th, 2008 at 7:24 pm

Hey Marcus you are right on point with Marion being the true MVP of that team. However I would like to ask you a few questions. In regards to your comment about Barbosa, They have Barbosa playing out of position, he is a true 2 guard. He is much more effective when he plays with Nash as the 2. I don’t think his game resembles or he attempts to play Kobes game at all other than they are both 2 guards.

And if you don’t mind, you may wish to answer this one on the overrated blog, tell me why you think Nash deserved his 2005 MVP? and not including LBJ’s spectacular playoff performance last year, how could he have deserved it over Kobe in the regular season?

I know it’s easy in retrospect to include playoff performances, if that was the case, we all know Wade would have walked away with it in 05, but you can’t. Being a Laker fan do you really think Lebron had a better season than Kobe in 07?

You also stated that Shaq makes them a better rebounding team, I really don’t believe so, He’s only averaging 8.5 RPG while Marion is Averaging 10.1. They cancell each othe out as far as BPG but Marion has a much higher efficiency rating. Shaq will give them a big body presence and bang capability in the post but I think they actually lose in rebounding. Again this doesn’t bode well for the Suns unless we see the emergence of the Shaq of Old. Hopefully for PHO he is pacing himself for the playoffs, if they make it that is.

Posted by: Sixnine on March 6th, 2008 at 9:18 pm


We are responding to an article about if the Suns are running out of excuses and you offer up the one already provided namely trading Marion to get Shaq and more personal excuses for Nash, why?

Before I go any further let me make it crystal clear: the Suns have run out of excuses!

However, more importantly the blame for the Suns being in the position to make excuses is the real issue and falls squarely on Nash’s shoulders. By the way, I not getting off topic I’m just drilling down further into this discussion as to why the Suns are pretenders.

Marcus you wrote: I don’t believe anyone has ever questioned Nash’s leadership or toughness.

I totally disagree with this statement and will explain why it’s incorrect on two levels:

#1 Leadership Qualities:
A. Verifiable: Steve has not lead the Suns any where in the playoffs. When considering the all-stars & talent he’s worked with his an obvious underachiever in regards to leadership. Leaders produce results!!!!!!!!
B. Defense: He has absolutely no leadership capabilities on the tough side of the court. What can Nash say to Bell or any of his teammates about how he/they should approach any defensive scheme, no question mark needed.
C. Mirroring: Leaders are role models with others following their lead. Well, Nash is a poor defender and the Suns are poor defenders, Nash is not tough and the Suns are not tough (why ya think they wanted Shaq?) Nash is a perimeter player and so are the Suns (most of his assists come from 3 pointers). Nash can not will his team to victories so the Suns have no will to win, obviously.

A + B+ C = How can anyone NOT question Nash’s Leadership.

#2 Toughness:
Defense: This is where you measure a player’s toughness. Anyone can run up and down the court and shoot or pass the ball even with a busted nose. However, true character is witnessed when a player digs down deep and plays hard nosed defense every night, Nash doesn’t even do it during the course of a game. I suppose when Nash allows marginal players to abuse him offensively you consider that tough, right? Defense is a true indicator of a player’s toughness and there is a direct correlation to Nash and his lack of it.

The Suns are out of excuses and should concentrate on solutions. However, it’s going to take some hard work and serious reevaluations which they are incapable of doing resulting from years of internal and external excuses.

Posted by: sdog on March 7th, 2008 at 12:19 pm

Sixnine, you seem to be thinking ’05-’06 season. I can’t speak for Marcus, but I was referring to the ’04-’05 season. That year the award was between Nash and Shaq. Shaq could have won it, but really no one put up huge numbers that season and the Suns improved by 33 games with Nash. Hence, why I said he earned that MVP by default.

’05-’06 is a different story. Bron and Wade were so much more deserving it’s ludicrous Nash won.

Posted by: Kyle on March 7th, 2008 at 12:26 pm

The only reason I said he deserved it is because I didn’t see any of that season except the Finals, so I really can’t say anything about that season.

Posted by: Marcus on March 7th, 2008 at 5:33 pm

Oh, almost forgot. Yes I believed Lebron should’ve have taken it over Kobe because his assists and rebounds were higher. That and the Lakers w/o Kobe are better than the Cavs w/o Lebron. If Kobe was ever to win a MVP over Lebron when Lebron is better statiscally,I wouldn’t have a problem with it.

When I said that about Barbosa, I meant when they play him as PG when Nash is on the bench. He does, at times, try to do too much when Nash is on the bench.

And by toughness I meant when he gets beat up, he keeps playing(Unless it’s one that kicks you out of games for 2 or more days). That and his willingness to take charges(Which, As I stated in “over-rated”, rely more on on a player being willing to be put on the floor and risk injury rather than good defense).I was not refering to his defense.

I said I don’t believe anyone has ever questioned his leadership because (Until now), I truly never heard anyone question his leadership.

Don’t think of me as a “Nashanatic”. I think he is the most over-rated player in the league. Sorry for any confusion that was in my last post.

Posted by: Marcus on March 7th, 2008 at 5:55 pm

If the suns do actually make the playoffs look for the big Aristotle In his huge oversized suit sitting on the bench. Bad move Steve. Good thing your young

Posted by: Harold on March 7th, 2008 at 7:03 pm

Marcus, how do YOU feel about Nash’s leadership after reading what I wrote on March 7th, 2008 at 12:19 pm? I’m not surprised you never heard anyone question his leadership, everyone believed the earth was flat back in the day. However, when critical thinking is applied to evaluate what is really happening like you did with Marion myths are dispelled.

Correct, charges are overrated especially when considering how often they take place by any one individual. Additionally, players are taught how to properly take charges so they are not as risky a some my think…how many times have you heard of a player been injured by taking a charge?

Posted by: sdog on March 9th, 2008 at 9:41 am

Oh, I don’t know. Maybe because I’m surrounded by Nashanatics almost everyday. Plus, I played in high school, and I have seen people get hurt by taking charges. True, most of them were minor injuries in which the players came back 5 minutes later. But I have seen a few that have caused players to miss a few games.

Posted by: Marcus on March 9th, 2008 at 6:38 pm

Well, they (the Suns as a whole) certainly stepped it up a little today (win over the Spurs at home). They seemed to jell at points – Shaq played well, although I’m still not convinced he’s a good fit yet? Hill played well as did Amare…Nash controlled the game, took over offensively near the end…impressive. He did this with the ‘greatest’ defensive one on one defender in league on him…no excuses.

Posted by: Joejacobi on March 9th, 2008 at 8:16 pm

Marcus, why is it so hard to give definitive answers to simple questions? How many times have you seen or heard of an NBA player getting injured and miss games or even plays as a result of taking a charge. Once you apply the leadership criteria I brought up above: A, B, C how do YOU rate Nash’s leadership skills?

Posted by: sdog on March 10th, 2008 at 6:37 am

I still think of him as somewhat of a leader. All PGs have to have some leadership qualities. What you said didn’t change my mind as much as ESPN’s Sunday Conversation(Where Nash said he doesn’t care if he gets a ring).

True, I haven’t seen that many. But there have been some occasions where players got hurt taking a charge.

Posted by: Marcus on March 10th, 2008 at 4:54 pm

He is still somewhat of a leader, just not like I thought. In truth, you’re criteria didn’t change my opinion. All PGs have to have some leadership qualities in them. But what he said on ESPN (about not caring about getting a ring) makes me doubt his leadership.

True, not many times. But there have been a few occasions where it happenend, though no recent ones I can remember.

Posted by: Marcus on March 10th, 2008 at 5:05 pm

Marcus, why did you post the same thing TWICE?

They did play well against the Spurs yesterday. But I don’t think they can win a 7 game series against them or any of the Western playoff teams for that matter(Except Utah and Houston). And that’s considering they make the playoffs.

Sdog, I am curious. I didn’t see any excuses made by Marcus. I agree with both of you guys to a degree(Sdogs criteria,though number 2 isn’t exactly true/Marcus saying they gave up their true MVP). The best leaders are ones who lead both offensively and defensively. There are still some that are only leaders on one side though.

Posted by: Chris on March 10th, 2008 at 5:17 pm

“Once you apply the leadership criteria I brought up above: A, B, C how do YOU rate Nash’s leadership skills?”
sdog, but that is YOUR idea of what leadership is on the basketball court – it may not be even close to mine or anyone else’s? I’m not saying it’s wrong or not valid but everyone is going to see it differently based on life experiences. Or are you just asking us/marcus to use your criteria?

Posted by: Joejacobi on March 10th, 2008 at 5:27 pm

I don’t think he said exactly he doesn’t care about getting a ring – I believe the question was “does he need a ring for athletic validation?”
“if it dies or doesn’t happen, I don’t care but I’m going for it, I’ve worked my butt off…” – up for your own interpretation – media/society puts so much emphasis on winning/succeeding that it almost seems thats what its all about. I’m sure he goes to bed every night like most hardcore pro athletes and thinks about winning it all. But should he, Karl, John S, Chuck and many others let that validate their careers? I think they all had great careers, HOF careers…should be proud.

Posted by: Joejacobi on March 10th, 2008 at 5:54 pm

I think it’s just me. He’s been bashing me since I made my first post.

Like Chris said, you’re criteria isn’t exactly correct. Except Chris didn’t mention A not being entirely true. If A was completely true, then that means that guys like Stockton, Wilkins and Ewing wouldn’t be considered as leaders because they never won a championship. But they were still leaders in their time.

And like Chris pointed out, B isn’t completely true. Here are some examples of what I think he was talking about.

Offense:Magic Johnson, John Stockton-These guys weren’t known for being leaders defensively. But one thing they did extremely well is run an offense. Nash is kinda like a watered down version of these 2.

As for C, I think you’re completely correct about that one.

Posted by: Marcus on March 11th, 2008 at 5:40 pm


Posted by: sdog on March 12th, 2008 at 4:34 pm

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