It feels just like yesterday when I was sitting in front of my TV watching one of the leagues bottom feeders, the Dallas Mavericks. They were horrible and didn’t seem to be getting any better. They were horrible at one point with an 11-71 record, and sometimes we as fans wondered if they wanted to win….. Jim Jackson, Jamal Mashburn, and Jason Kidd were all selected in consecutive years. Mavs fans had something great to cheer about as it felt like the foundations of a playoff team were coming together. After some internal disagreements between the players, all three were traded. The Mavericks started a revolving door in regards to players which eventually landed them the Phoenix Suns 1996 draft pick, Steve Nash.
So their I was, the Mavericks were playing and Steve Nash was about to enter the game. It was a home game and boos were filling the stadium louder than ever. Who was this player the fans didn’t like? Why were they so harsh on a guy who I had never heard of? Well, as I grew older I came to realize who that players was, and only because I remember his face. Nash was a guy, with his short blonde hair at the time, that just didn’t look very good on the court. He looked lost and confused. It also didn’t help that the team had players nobody in the league wanted except Michael Finley. From that day in Dallas, the boos went from cheers followed by tears when he left. Anyways I wanted to share this story from when I was younger because I feel like this has been something Nash has faced throughout his career. He’s been a player that you might initially boo but come to respect. I’ve read stories about how Steve and Dirk would go to the gym late at night, stories of Nash’s diet and community service involvement, and how respected he was in the locker room.
I respect and will miss watching Nash weave through a defense and shoot that fall away fader and slide on his back. I will miss his no look assists or lethal 3 pointers that looked like it was nothing to him. His 2 NBA MVP’s were a sign of a good/great quarterback the league got to enjoy. Steve, thank you for the memories and sharing your life with us as we got to enjoy 19 years of your career. We wish you the best from Dallas, and hope that you have much more success in the future.