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Unlike some Lakers fans, D’Antoni doesn’t want to push Nash toward retirement

Nov 13, 2013, 1:59 PM EDT

Utah Jazz v Los Angeles Lakers Getty Images

The back/root nerve problem that has Steve Nash sidelined the next two weeks at least (expect longer) is the same one that had him out during the playoffs last year and really stems back to the broken leg and nerve issue he suffered at the start of last season. Just talking to him you can see how deflated he is that this injury has been so difficult to get beyond.

Some Lakers fans, seeing little productivity and $9.7 million on the books next season for him, want to see Steve Nash retire.

Nash has said that’s not in his plans and Mike D’Antoni pushed back on the idea speaking to the Los Angeles Times Tuesday.

“There’s always going to be a debate but we’re not going to debate it, talk about it,” Lakers Coach Mike D’Antoni said Tuesday. “He’s going to try to get ready, he’s going to try to play and we’re going to try to win. It’s really simple for us. It’s not real difficult.”

While there is the possibility of a “medical retirement” that would wipe Nash off the books for next season the odds are long — the Lakers team doctor has to declare him medically unfit to play, the league doctor has to verify those findings and he can’t play in more than 10 games this season (he’s already been in six). The league grants these very infrequently.

Nash could retire, but again he has said he has no plans to do that yet. This is not how he wants to leave the game. Both the Lakers and Nash are trying to get him healthy and back on the court, not push him out the door.

D’Antoni wants Nash back on the court.

“Steve will just have to get back as soon as he can and then we’ll see where we are,” D’Antoni said.

  1. limonadamas - Nov 13, 2013 at 2:14 PM

    What do you expect him to say? Even if they wanted Nash to retire, they’re not going to say that to the media. That would be idiotic. The fact they’re saying otherwise doesn’t mean that’s what they’re thinking.

    Let’s put it this way, if Nash would be willing to retire of his own volition and wipe his salary off the books completely, does anyone think the Lakers would try to talk him out of it?

  2. chargerdillon - Nov 13, 2013 at 2:27 PM

    We need to be more worried about Kobe retiring than Nash. We really need to see the different team they become when Kobe comes back and takes the ball from his teamates 80% of the time.

    If this roster can get to 500 ball without Kobe, they better be above it when he comes back. If they stay the same, why in the hell would they continue to pay this guy skyrocketing numbers for hindering the performance of…..THE TEAM.

    I’m as big of a Kobe fan as they come, but his time has to come to an end before he’s hurting the team.

    • kb2408 - Nov 13, 2013 at 2:43 PM

      “The team” is a lottery team without Kobe. And throwing out 80% is a gross exaggeration. As for them paying Kobe “skyrocketing” numbers, that is not going to happen. Kobe will sign a 2 or 3 year deal for nowhere near the salary he is getting this season. Whether you believe it or not, Kobe is not playing for money at this stage of his career. He is playing to enhance his legacy. He knows there is absolutely no way the LAKERS can possibly build a team with him making 30 million bucks a season. Therefore, to have any chance at number 6, he will take less money. Now I’m not saying he will play for the minimum. But he will play for far less than 30 mill. Kobe will continue to make millions of dollars long after he has retired, so money is not the determining factor. Kobe was close to joining the Clips for goodness sakes! Trust me, it wasn’t for the money. He wanted to win rings and back then it appeared that the LAKERS couldn’t get him the help he needed.

      • sportsfan18 - Nov 14, 2013 at 3:06 AM

        But so many Lakers fans this summer on this site said how they’d be a playoff team, be better than people thought they’d be.

        I’m not claiming to know what you thought of them in the summer now as I don’t know.

        My point is that so many were saying the Lakers would be OK, better than people expected.

        Then again, so many Knicks fans said they’d be better than they were last yr too…

        I appreciate honest fans who don’t view everything regarding their teams through rose colored glasses.

    • antistratfordian - Nov 13, 2013 at 4:20 PM

      Lakers fans don’t care about that, dillon – Kobe’s been hurting the team for years and they really don’t mind. They ride or die with him.

      • cambo0019 - Nov 13, 2013 at 5:53 PM

        This guy ^ …..
        @anti Kobe isn’t a terrible player, he is definitely not worthy of your praise and it’s obvious that you believe he has not amounted to much.
        Why comment so much about a player that you don’t like?
        There’s plenty of lbj articles floating around for you to support bruh.

        Tell us why he’s a lesser player? What makes him so bad?

      • asimonetti88 - Nov 13, 2013 at 6:30 PM

        If Kobe hurting the team for years results in 5 championships and 7 trips to the Finals, I’d gladly let him hurt the team for years to come.

  3. hildezero - Nov 13, 2013 at 4:57 PM

    We PHX Suns wanted Steve to retire as soon as he went to the L.A. Lakers…

  4. ajacobs79 - Nov 13, 2013 at 5:28 PM

    I’m sorry, but as Lakers fans why wouldn’t we want a healthy Nash? Yes, his salary is unfortunate if he can’t play up to his standards. But instead of “don’t let the door hit you on the way out,” isn’t it preferable to hope we get an all-time great, Hall of Fame point guard back at even 75%?!? And make no mistake, Nash is a true competitor. It’s KILLING him that he can’t get fully healthy or contribute consistently. No one wants this more than him, and it’s not because of the money. I’m disappointed times ten this trade hasn’t worked out, but Nash deserves to go out on better terms. And the Lakers deserve to get more out of the acquisition than we have thus far. I’m praying he gets sufficiently healthy soon, both for his own sanity and for the benefit of the Lakers.

  5. hildezero - Nov 13, 2013 at 6:02 PM

    *fans

  6. misterdreamer119 - Nov 14, 2013 at 12:13 AM

    Nash is a fossil.

  7. lakerwoman - Nov 14, 2013 at 12:59 AM

    Just push D’Antoni toward retirement!!!

  8. redbaronx - Nov 14, 2013 at 8:13 AM

    Nash should probably retire for his own sake and health. He’s had back issues for years now and no one wants to see him become one of those guys that can’t walk in the end.

  9. Anoesis - Nov 14, 2013 at 11:31 AM

    While I certainly hoped Nash could have contributed more than he has been able to, at what point does he take into consideration what is best for the team? If he isn’t able to make any sustained run of games sometime this season he should retire at the end of the year.

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