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Steve Nash blames back problems for poor shooting night against Blazers

Feb 23, 2013, 3:30 PM EDT

Steve Nash, Damian Lillard

The Lakers pulled out a close win over the Blazers on Friday, behind a stellar 40-point offensive performance from Kobe Bryant.

Bryant hasn’t been scoring like this lately, preferring instead to involve his teammates more in the offense by passing up shots in favor of getting them some better and more consistent looks. But when they struggle to score, as Steve Nash did in this one, Bryant is forced to take matters into his own hands.

Nash is one of the game’s historically high-percentage shooters, but had one of his worst games in recent memory in terms of making shots. He finished 2-11 from the field, and missed his only attempts from the free throw line and three-point arc by leaving both shots uncharacteristically short.

As it turns out, there was a reason for Nash’s struggles.

From Eric Pincus of the Los Angeles Times:

“I tweaked my back in the first quarter and it kept locking up,” said Nash. “It was tight the whole game and I couldn’t get the mobility.”

“I didn’t have enough time to get it sorted out and it just tightened up as it [went on],” said Nash of his back. “Hopefully, since we don’t play tomorrow, it should be fine by Sunday.”

The last thing the Lakers need is more injury concerns this season, and should Nash go down for any extended period of time, the team would find itself in even more trouble than it already is in trying to secure a spot to play in the postseason.

Despite Nash’s shooting woes, he was stil able to push the tempo and create a few things for his teammates during his 34 minutes of on-court action. He knows what it takes to get his body right, and works as hard on the conditioning aspect of his game as any player in the league, so hopefully for the Lakers this won’t become a lingering issue to finish out the season.

  1. kingbeason52 - Feb 23, 2013 at 3:55 PM

    I cant believe Steve isnt catching more heat for the Lakers poor season..He has not had a very impactful season at all..

    • dls612 - Feb 23, 2013 at 4:05 PM

      Even though I’m not a fan and yes I had to make it known! I believe him, it’s Damn near impossible to do anything with a your back out of wack maybe he really never recovered from his back problem which is the result of his lack of impact,

    • eventhorizon04 - Feb 23, 2013 at 5:17 PM

      While he missed 24 games due to injury, he’s given the Lakers a 50% FG – 40% 3PT – 90% FT season, scoring 12 points per game along with 7 assists and 3 rebounds per game per game (roughly near his career averages), despite being asked to play without the ball a lot.

      So while his production is down, he’s been an efficient contributor despite being asked to change his game from ball-dominant point guard to part-time spot-up shooter at age 39. He also hasn’t complained publicly, as Pau Gasol, Dwight Howard, and even Kobe Bryant have.

    • aboogy123456 - Feb 23, 2013 at 6:38 PM

      What Nash has provided the lakers this season has been exactly what I expected. He’s a guy who spaces the floor very well with his shot, makes good decisions, has confidence to hit clutch shots, and is looking to get his teammates involved. He also brings it every night on defense even though he’s not a good defender. I’m not sure why people were expecting him to average 20 points and 10 assists and all of a sudden play great D. The unreasonable expectations for him are taking away from all the positive things that he brings to the team.

  2. baymac408 - Feb 23, 2013 at 4:39 PM

    I used to like Steve Nash… Then he became a laker

  3. tannethrill - Feb 23, 2013 at 5:10 PM

    Now Kobe is supposed to tell him to suck it up.

  4. musilly - Feb 23, 2013 at 6:15 PM

    The drama surrounding whether they make the playoffs is a little silly. They’re playing really ugly basketball even in their wins, and the team is rather lifeless: Gasol’s out and will return slow-footed; Howard and Nash are hobbled; the bench is terrible; and Kobe’s had a really nice season but he’s a top-10, not a top-5, player at this point. In other words, even if they make the playoffs as the 8 seed, would they even manage to win a playoff game? I think the Laker talk is a way to distract ourselves until we are treated to some really good basketball: OKC vs. Miami would be great, OKC vs. HOU in the first round, Clips v. Spurs would be nice, etc. Lakers are just a footnote.

    • mytthor - Feb 23, 2013 at 10:01 PM

      Nothing ugly about the Celtics win, or this one. They play a slow tempo but when they play well they move the ball extremely well. Kobe is absolutely still a top 5 player, he’s having his best season since like 2005. He’s right below Durant and LeBron, about even with Chris Paul, still better than Melo before someone says that. If you think OKC and Houston would be more fun than watching the Lakers and OKC, you’re crazy.

      Nash has had this one bad game and is having an amazing shooting season as we’ve become used to. The bench isn’t deep but when Gasol comes back he’s coming off the bench, Jamison and Meeks are getting it done, and benches matter way less in the playoffs, when there are no back to backs and players can play more minutes.

  5. aboogy123456 - Feb 23, 2013 at 6:37 PM

    I think Nash has been a little over glorified in that he has always been a bad defender and he doesn’t have the athleticism to blow by people on offense. The last couple years the offense ran through him every play so he was putting up stats, but he’s not a dominant point guard.

    What Nash has provided the lakers this season has been exactly what I expected. He’s a guy who spaces the floor very well with his shot, makes good decisions, has confidence to hit clutch shots, and is looking to get his teammates involved. He also brings it every night on defense even though he’s not a good defender. I’m not sure why people were expecting him to average 20 points and 10 assists and all of a sudden play great D. The unreasonable expectations for him are taking away from all the positive things that he brings to the team.

  6. hannsta - Feb 23, 2013 at 6:45 PM

    Lol did anyone see those go-to-booth instant replays? Made me want to stop watching the NBA. Its pretty clear the Lakers ARE making the playoffs.

  7. mazblast - Feb 23, 2013 at 6:46 PM

    Did Nash tell the coaches that he was hurt, or did he try to “gut it out”?

    Someone his age ought to be smarter.

  8. omniusprime - Feb 24, 2013 at 8:54 AM

    Ancient Trash Nash is the worst excuse for a point guard the Lakers could have ever brought to the team. Trash Nash has been worthless as a Laker. Now he can’t shoot because he has a bad back, what a sissy trying to gain sympathy by crying about his back when he’s just over the hill and should retire. Steve Flake is no better, another worthless excuse for a point guard. With these two deadbeats at point guard it’s no wonder the Lakers suck. Neither plays any defense.

    The fault is that pathetic excuse for a coach, Dumbtoni, who is too stupid to stop playing these two total losers. If the Lakers had a great coach like Phil Jackson or Jerry Sloan the Lakers would be cruising to another championship. We can blame that little idiot buss boy for bringing such garbage to the once mighty Lakers.

    Fire Dumbtoni!!! Trade Trash Nash and Steve Flake!!! Thanks Dr. Buss and Rest in Peace!!!

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