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Steve Nash hopes to return to Lakers lineup for Sunday’s playoff opener

Apr 20, 2013, 11:00 AM EDT

Los Angeles Lakers v Houston Rockets Getty Images

Steve Nash has missed the Lakers’ last eight games due to a combination of a hip and hamstring injury, but said after practicing fully on Friday for the first time in weeks that he hopes to be able to go in Game 1 of his team’s first round playoff matchup against the Spurs on Sunday.

From Dave McMenamin of ESPN Los Angeles:

“Mentally, I’m champing at the bit and physically, I’m getting there,” Nash said Friday. “So, I’m very optimistic that I’ll be able to play on Sunday, and I just don’t want to overpromise and get ahead of myself. The last three weeks now, I wake up every morning thinking, ‘Today’s the day,’ and then I want to hang myself after practice. So, I don’t want to overpromise at this point, but I’m very optimistic.”

Nash had a reputation of playing through pain during his time in Phoenix, so to not be able to practice while being forced to sit out the final stretch of the regular season at a time when his team needed him the most, the injuries he was dealing with were undoubtedly serious.

The Lakers have maintained a day-to-day status on Nash, but without practicing there was no way he would be cleared to play, especially after he lasted just two minutes in a start in Sacramento back on March 30.

Without Nash, and without Kobe Bryant the last two games, Steve Blake has stepped up his production playing in the starting point guard spot. His numbers over the past two games — playoff-clinching wins over the Spurs and the Rockets — have been nothing short of striking. Blake averaged 23.5 points, 6.0 rebounds, and 5.5 assists, while playing 36 minutes against San Antonio, and 48 minutes during the overtime win over Houston.

Should Nash return, he and Blake could very well see time together in the starting lineup. Jodie Meeks has started at the two in each of the past two games, but hasn’t shot the ball well at all, going a combined 5-21 from the field in 36 minutes per game during that stretch.

  1. addict2sport - Apr 20, 2013 at 11:35 AM

    The Spurs’ point guards hope Nash returns as well.

  2. brugis23 - Apr 20, 2013 at 12:07 PM

    @addict, good one.

  3. tombstone7 - Apr 20, 2013 at 5:02 PM

    For the love of God, give this story a rest…. nothing new here!

  4. omniusprime - Apr 21, 2013 at 8:52 AM

    Stupid Trash Nash doesn’t know it’s “chomping” at the bit, not “champing”, then again if he plays he’ll just be “chumping” around. Why does Trash Nash hate the Lakers so much he wants to return to play? If that idiot Dumbtoni is stupid enough to play both Trash Nash and Steve Flake together that’s 40% of the team on the court not playing any defense, no wonder Howard gets in foul trouble trying to clean up their mistakes.

    If Trash Nash wants to help the Lakers then he should retire, he’s been a total failure ever since he’s been a Laker. Same with Steve Flake, increased production or not. What good is his increased production when he doesn’t play defense either? At least Meeks plays defense, best if he’s paired up with one of the other defensive deadbeats so the Lakers aren’t totally defenseless.

    Fire Dumtoni!!! Trade Trash Nash & Steve Flake!!! Get Well Soonest Kobe!!! Go Lakers!!!

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