Phoenix Suns practice report: Team hoping for quick transition post trade; no surgery for Vince Carter


PHOENIX — At the onset of the 2010-11 season, the biggest question for the Suns was how long it would take for their new acquisitions to gel together.

More than a quarter of the way through the schedule, Phoenix is about to start that process all over again.

“It’s harder when you get traded midseason because you go through training camp trying to learn everything and then you have to start all over,” Vince Carter said. “So now the three of us will try to work as hard as possible to get everything down [again].”

With a record of 13-14 and in a conference that took 50 wins to make the playoffs last year, time is in even shorter supply this time around.

“We have to go out there and try to do the best we can and stay in the playoff picture; we don’t have much of a choice,” Steve Nash said. “You never know how long it’ll take but we are going to try to improve a little every day and see if we can win some games while we’re trying to get better.”

The buzz around practice Wednesday was confident. Everyone seemed to like what they saw from the new guys and how they meshed together. However, no one expects everything to run as smoothly as they’d like to right away.

“I’m definitely going to need a couple more practices; it all isn’t going to click in 48 hours,” Marcin Gortat said. “I would say in one or two more weeks we are going to learn everything, and with time we should be better.”

Even though the Suns probably won’t click on all cylinders from the get go, it still doesn’t mean they can’t win a few games while making the necessary adjustments.

It’ll have to be a baptism by fire.

How the team fares while learning on the job will go a long way in determining how Phoenix finishes.

Vince Carter injury update

No surgery will be required on the newly acquired 33-year-old’s knee.

While still being listed as day-to-day, Carter didn’t practice Wednesday, but did shoot around afterward.

“Rehab can be frustrating, especially when you’re on a new team; you want to get out there and help but you’ve got to be smart about it and think long term,” Carter said. “But I will say in the day and a half since I first got here, the swelling has gone down significantly. And once you get the swelling out, that’s when you heal.”

As for if Carter will make his Suns debut against Miami Thursday, that still remains questionable.

“We’ll see,” Suns coach Alvin Gentry said. “[But] there’s no reason to rush things. We want him healthy before we run him out there.”

The Steve Nash Effect

Players around the league dream about teaming up with the two-time MVP, but for Phoenix’s newest Suns, the dream is about to become reality.

“He makes it easier for everyone,” Carter said. “His vision and fearlessness with the ball [makes] everybody trust that he’s going to make the right play and find who’s open; and you feel that you need to be ready for when that situation comes.”

Nash’s newest big man echoed Carter’s comments.

“I’m excited; it’s awesome to play with a Hall of Famer in the pick-and-roll,” Gortat said with a huge grin. “It’s better to play with him than to guard him. I’m pretty sure he’s going to take care of me.”

Gentry offered up some high praise as well.

“I don’t think anybody in the NBA is asked to do more than Steve,” the coach said. “The only thing that is hurting him is our record right now, and that’s not his fault. If any year he’s had an All-Star year, I think it’s right now. He’s playing great.”

Nash files for divorce

According to the Arizona Republic, Nash filed divorce papers at the Maricopa County Superior Court Dec. 15.

The point guard announced his plans to leave his wife of five years, Alejandra, back on Nov. 13.

The pair have three children together, including a newborn son born the day before the divorce was first announced.

Nash to pitch Flip cams

Steve Nash’s latest endorsement is a product very close to the heart of ValleyoftheSuns — Flip Video cameras.

We have been shooting Suns video interviews with Flips since the start of the 2009-10 season, and now through this endorsement deal Nash will be featured in 15- and 30-second commercials for Flip Video that he shoots himself, according to the Phoenix Business Journal.

This seems like a natural opportunity for Nash, who frequently creates fun videos with his production company Meathawk.

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Tags: Marcin Gortat Steve Nash Vince Carter

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