On fan reaction to the Steve Nash trade

Posted by on July 5th, 1:57 am

Based on what I’ve seen on Twitter and Facebook today as well as this very site’s comment section, many Suns fans are outraged that Steve Nash would force a trade to them.

Suns fans were prepared to jump on the bandwagon of the Knicks or the Nets or the Mavericks or whatever team it would end up being so long as it would not be the hated Los Angeles Lakers. Everybody wants to see Nash win a ring; nobody wants to see Kobe win his sixth at the same time.

As Seth Pollack detailed over at Bright Side, “For Steve Nash to pick the Purple and Gold as his final uniform is a knife to the back of those fans who embraced his return after being discarded by Dallas.”

As I was trying to argue the virtues of the trade, Jason Zaler summed up many fans’ feelings by writing to me on Facebook, “Michael, the fact is the there ARE emotions in Sport. Much tougher for long suffering fanbases than for the players themselves.”

I grew up a Phoenix Suns fan, and there is no player in this franchise’s history that I have enjoyed watching more than Steve Nash. Hell, when I play ball I try to emulate him to the extent that I drive through the lane and back out and take pull-up threes off the dribble (unsuccessfully I might add) more often than I should.

Yet in running this site for four years, I have always sought to think with my head rather than my heart. It’s always about what move puts the Suns in the best future position, not “OMG they just traded another SSOL guy!”

Thus, when I heard the Suns were obtaining four picks, including two first-rounders, my first thought was that the management appeased Nash while getting back lots of draft flexibility, not the fact that we’re going to have to suffer through three seasons of Nash in purple and gold.

Looking at the trade without emotion it would appear the Suns made out like bandits. Instead of getting nothing for Nash (or having to gum up their cap and not be able to sign Goran Dragic), the Suns have two first-round picks coming their way, picks that could come in handy in negotiations with New Orleans for Eric Gordon.

But that’s not what many Suns fans see. They see their favorite player and franchise icon heading to play for the team they despise more than any other (aside from perhaps San Antonio).

Lakers fans will be unbearable these next few years (if they weren’t already) and it’s pretty funny to see them all flip flop on how they feel about Nash.

I made the comment that we are all just rooting for laundry in my previous piece, and perhaps that’s true for the players but not fans. Fans felt a real loyalty to Nash, and by asking for a trade to the despised Lakers it makes them question all those years of undying devotion to him.

This makes for an uncomfortable case of cognitive dissonance because most Suns fans love Nash but hate the Lakers. That’s a problem when it’s now impossible to root for Nash but not the Lakers.

To some it has felt like a betrayal. Suns fans have been preparing for this day for two years (and really seemed to sense it during that finale against the Spurs with the “We want Steve!” chants), yet it has always been this fan base’s worst nightmare that he ends up as Kobe’s sidekick. Any other team and this would be a bittersweet situation; with this being the Lakers many people seem ready to turn in their fan card.

Ultimately this is nobody’s fault. This is not the LeBron situation. Nash did not embarrass the organization, in fact all parties seemed to agree now was the time to move on.

This is not the Dwight situation. He did not get half the organization fired while flip-flopping about his intentions and acting like a petulant child at the same time. He remained loyal to the Suns until the bitter end through these past two disappointing years, and by this point it became painfully obvious both sides would be better off apart (although it would have been interesting to see him next to Gordon).

As such, I hope fans give him the applause he deserves when he next returns to US Airways Center. The man did everything he could to bring this franchise a championship in his eight seasons. He handled himself with the utmost class and changed the way the league plays offense. He’s arguably the best player in franchise history and one of the most exciting to ever play the game. It’s too bad he’s a Laker, but if I were not sitting on press row I’d be applauding him.

He’s not Benedict Arnold, he’s just trying to win a ring like all these Suns fans have wanted him to do these past few years.

As a reporter/analyst, it is my job to remain objective. I am always thinking about how such and such moves impacts future flexibility, and how Move A affects Move B.

In that regard, the Phoenix Suns are better today with the four draft picks than they would be if Nash picked Toronto. That’s the way I see this move.

Yet at the same time, basketball isn’t played on a spreadsheet. Emotions are involved, and everyone loves Nash but hates the Lakers.

This isn’t an easy day for anybody who calls themselves a Suns fan, so I get why people feel so strongly, but just because the Suns’ biggest star decided to play for the Lakers is no reason to forget everything he meant to this franchise.

How will Nash do without the Suns’ vaunted training staff?

Shaq may as well have retired once he left the clutches of Aaron Nelson and the warlocks, as he hardly resembled a shell of the player who eked out one final All-Star appearance as a Sun once he left Phoenix.

So how will Nash do now that Nelson is no longer watching his every move?

When I interviewed Nelson for my big feature on the Suns’ training staff, he explained how well he understands how Nash’s body works.

“He gets a little pain from shearing forces, but then he doesn’t feel like he can stop the way he stops, when he’s shooting he might drift, so it’s changing just real small, small things with his body, and we’ve watch him every day for the last [eight] years so we see that stuff. If you were just watching Nash play he either looks fatigued or he’s missing shots, but we can see some of those issues.”

Will the Lakers’ trainers see that stuff as well?

A relative bargain for Beasley

So while the Rockets are paying $25 million over three years for Omer Asik and the Raptors $20 million over three for Landry Fields, the Suns acquired Beasley for $18 million over three years.

This for an immensely talented former No. 2 overall pick with a 19.2 ppg season already under his belt. Beasley is a high-risk, high-reward kind of player, but in this situation a $6 million a year risk is certainly worth the potential reward Beasley could provide.

Michael Schwartz founded ValleyoftheSuns in October 2008 and is the owner/editor emeritus of the site. He is currently working toward his MBA in sports business at San Diego State University.

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Tags: Los Angeles Lakers · Phoenix Suns · Phoenix Suns Analysis · Steve Nash

66 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Tony // Jul 5, 2012 at 2:12 am

    Well-said Michael. For me personally it is just a tough pill to swallow. Nash has been my favorite player for so many years and of all the teams in the league none other than the Lakers have I felt such disdain for.

  • 2 Scott // Jul 5, 2012 at 2:34 am

    Mmm … I think Kobe will be Steve’s sidekick.

    Just sayin’. ;)

    And who knows … if Nash implodes like Dorian Gray once he’s out of the Phoenix training room … it will be sad for Nash fans, but there will be some schadenfreude as regards the fortunes of the Lakers. ;)

  • 3 sgtg // Jul 5, 2012 at 2:38 am

    If Nash picked Toronto?
    How do you figure? There is no way the Lakers could give Nash the 28 mil without the sign-and-trade…that’s all. He needed it.
    I understand we get 4 picks (I’m happy) but he had to have the s&t in order to get paid, right?
    A pacific division rival…wow, this still makes no sense…unless he dislikes phx now.

  • 4 Scott // Jul 5, 2012 at 3:12 am

    @sgtg -

    Players don’t see the league the way fans do. Players see the league as a series of opportunities – some better, some worse – whereas fans develop loyalties.

    For players, it’s a business. A very lucrative business.

  • 5 Fan in Chi Town // Jul 5, 2012 at 3:15 am

    Come on, Suns fans. We can’t live in the past. This is a new era for us: The Dragic Era. Don’t think about nash anymore. We have to look at the future. We will have a young team, a point guard that Nash himself groomed and if we land a couple more pieces, could actually be better than we have been the past couple of seasons really quick. I’m already excited to watch our new team next season.

    I love that we got Dragic back. My only beef is if the FO had this plan in place, why on earth did they use their lottery pick on an unproven PG? Seems like they could have used it on a big or small forward, but whatever, maybe they will trade Marshall.

    Forget about nash. He’s gone. Dragic is our guy now, look to the future…..and resist the urge to watch any nash-lakers YouTube videos lol.

  • 6 Rich Anthony, (KJL) // Jul 5, 2012 at 3:21 am

    I will probably get stoned to death for this next one but, whatever.

    I was actually far more enraged when Phoenix shipped Dragon to Houston than I was when I first read that Phoenix shipped Two-Time to Los Angeles.

    There simply was no future for the Suns with Nash as the team’s center of the Universe. You could see that was the case at the start of free agency. All of these teams came after Nash while Phoenix went after everybody BUT Nash.

    I absolutely hate the Lakers and I still hate the Lakers, but I love Nash, so I hope that franchise can get him that ring. In terms of the man himself, he will always be a god in Phoenix but like I told Hollinger on twitter who brought up the emotional state of Suns fans:

    “Nash gets a 1-year window of support, then he is the enemy.”

    I’ll still love the guy, but after this season, (and probably during this upcoming season), I will want Dragon to set fire to him. I will want Marshall to set fire to him, because he will be in the way. It is what it is.

    As far as the medical staff goes, If Nash falls apart in Los angeles it isn’t our problem anymore and it’ll enhance the allure of guys wanting to come to the Valley.

    I love all the moves today. Even getting Beasley, (because he scares me to death), because the deal was affordable and easily traded away later if he does perform but proves to still be a head case.

  • 7 Joe Cano // Jul 5, 2012 at 3:41 am

    Everything you said I understood and felt the same way , About everything you said except everything after “Ultimately this is nobody’s fault” He tried all those years against the lakers and failed , & then he went to them . we wasted all those 8 years then . He teamed up with the team who hates Phoenix . He was my favorite player . The Lakers and Suns games was like a war and now he’s on there side.

  • 8 Daniel // Jul 5, 2012 at 4:48 am

    I’ve enjoyed the watching Nash the last 8 years, the SSOL Suns may not have won a championship but they were a lot of fun to watch. Having said that… I’m a Phoenix Suns fan and ready for the Dragon’s return!
    [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1XhhStFfJ-A&w=560&h=315

  • 9 shazam // Jul 5, 2012 at 5:19 am

    the biggest news in years about the suns has happened in the last 24 hours..we all like sarver now…tony has even given kudos to the owner…so where is sarvers biggest booster and tony nemesis STEVE?…now that sarver doesn’t need good pr has steve been taken off the payroll?

  • 10 HankS // Jul 5, 2012 at 5:56 am

    Oh well, Nash wanted to play somewhere close to be able to fly back to PHX to see his kids frequently, and the Suns brass granted him the wish in spite the outcry they knew would come… I can live with that. Nash doesn’t deserve to be called traitor, t’s not like he defected: he had a wish, talked to the bosses about it, and his wish was granted. More classy than being enraged about it, as far as I’m concerned.

    And I’m very curious how the Lakers ball will work out. Kobe never really played with a true pointguard. Nash never played with a true center, except when Shaq was here, and the result was horrible. The Lakers’ backcourt will be made of the least selfish guy in the NBA and the most selfish one, with the former needing the ball a lot. Nash, Kobe and Pau are about a century old… well see. It’s not an entirely risk-free move for the Lakers.

  • 11 PennyAnd1 // Jul 5, 2012 at 6:09 am

    I am so hurt to know Nash left Phoenix to go to our rival Lakers. It’s so sad. But atleast he did help get Phoenix with the future.

    Now I’m crossing my fingers that Gordon, Beasley & Dragic are all here when the season starts. What concerns me the most is Gordon. I hope Hornets respects his decision and let him be.

    All in all, I’m still happy with direction we are going into. I think Dragic can be the next Nash while at the same time, we have Marshall who can be the next Stockton waiting just in case Dragic goes crazy and loses focus.

    And I hope Beasley revives his career here along with Oden. But we need Eric Gordon to make this all better.

    @Scott

    I agree with you. I think Kobe will be Nash’s sidekick. I can’t believe Kobe & Nash will team up!!! it’s like having MJ & Magic Johnson play together.

    We will miss you Nash! Thanx for the great memories!

  • 12 Greg // Jul 5, 2012 at 7:00 am

    Another reason to like the trade (in addition to, you know, getting four draft picks and a trade exception for a guy the Suns were going to let walk anyway):

    Kobe is now only 2nd on his team in MVP awards won.

  • 13 Brian // Jul 5, 2012 at 7:24 am

    All I have to contribute are two nickname implications…

    1) We can still go on calling him “Two Time”

    2) The Lakers’ new backcourt can now be officially dubbed “Divorce Court”

  • 14 Matt // Jul 5, 2012 at 7:41 am

    REAL SUNS FAN JOIN MY MOVEMENT !! http://www.facebook.com/mrorng/posts/441716982529751?notif_t=like

  • 15 Tim A // Jul 5, 2012 at 7:56 am

    I remember being a pre-teen and weeping when the suns dealt Paul Westphal to the sonics. I and in my forties now and I feel That the only thing stopping the tears this time is the knowledge that the lakers get everything they want unless they are trying to rip off Stern’s team. I other Workd, you can’t beat city hall.

  • 16 steve // Jul 5, 2012 at 8:30 am

    “now that sarver doesn’t need good pr has steve been taken off the payroll?”

    I’m sad to say this, everyone, but I’ve been let go. It appears that Mr. Sarver believes my services are no longer necessary.

    No, in all seriousness, even with Sarver being the madman that he is, he still allows his employees a few winks of sleep every now and then. That explains my three hour absence from the site. I’m back on the clock now. ;)

    Even if the Suns can’t land Gordon, I’m thoroughly impressed with the way management has handled this offseason. This is MILES AND MILES ahead of anything I have seen from Babby and Blanks so far. Perhaps they are learning from their mistakes.

    Now, we all know that even good moves sometimes don’t pan out well. So, I’m not saying the Suns are going to make the playoffs, or that they’re even going to improve, but I do believe the moves they have so far this offseason have been the right moves for the franchise, regardless of how they pan out in the end.

    Man, I can’t wait until November.

  • 17 Scott // Jul 5, 2012 at 8:46 am

    I thought this observation from Forum Blue and Gold was noteworthy …

    (Sidenote: I was long under the impression that Nash and Sessions were similar defensive players but that opinion appears to be selling Nash short. Sessions Synergy numbers are much worse in every defensive play type and from a team perspective, the Lakers performed better on D when Sessions sat versus when he was on the floor. I don’t want to bury Sessions here, but Nash looks to be the superior defender – even at his advanced age – and one can only assume that with better defenders flanking him, it will only help Nash further.)

    http://www.forumblueandgold.com/2012/07/05/putting-the-steve-nash-trade-under-the-microscope/

  • 18 GoSuns // Jul 5, 2012 at 8:53 am

    Nash good luck, id rather him be in the lakers than the spurs or heat, hes not a traitor and this was the way to end the relationship

  • 19 Jason A. // Jul 5, 2012 at 9:05 am

    After an abundance of reflection since the trade was announced, I have come to the conclusion that:

    1. I wish Nash well. I’ll probably catch myself pulling for the lakers at times, and if they’re in the Finals I’ll be (gulp) rooting for them. I hate the f****** lakers though. Their fans are gutter trash. For the record Michael, there is way more hatred for the lakers than the Spurs and it will always be that way. I always had a twinge of respect for the Spurs being small market and all. No such respect for la.

    2. I give our FO an ENORMOUS amount of credit. They did the right thing by Nash in trading him to the team of his choice and showed what they’re made of. They took care of the player and other players will take notice. All those FAs coming here? Expect that to continue.

    3. From a basketball perspective, I don’t think we could have done much better. Those draft picks are better than nothing and we got a trade exception in the deal (yay, who cares). Obviously the real value here is getting Dragic on a very reasonable contract. He’s indeed come home, and he’ll be motivated, happy, and relieved he didn’t kick Nash out of town. I expect us to be a playoff team.

  • 20 JD // Jul 5, 2012 at 9:08 am

    I agree 100% with Rich Anthony. I would also like to add that I dislike the Spurs more than the Lakers.

  • 21 Phil // Jul 5, 2012 at 9:14 am

    good to see a little more reason on this thread. As a longtime Suns fan, I was embarrassed by some of the reactions to Nash – comparing him to Lebron or Howard is just absurd. He stayed two years longer than any other star in the NBA probably would have, and even then as a free agent did a sign and trade that helped us on the way out. For those who say he did that for the cash, remember he played for us on a discount for 8 years, and had larger offers on the table.

    For professional and personal reasons, LA makes sense for Nash, and we can’t as fans expect a pro athlete to have the same emotions as we do. I wish him all the luck in the world, and will hold my nose and support the Lakers against anyone but the Suns. Nash was a great and loyal servant to this franchise and probably deserves a ring more than anyone in the NBA

  • 22 cha cha cha // Jul 5, 2012 at 9:26 am

    after have my mind blown during the Suns’ ’04-’05 season and my heart broken by the Spurs (and the Joe Johnson injury), i took to the Suns’ forum at azcentral (which, in retrospect, was a lot like “Deadwood”), especially following the Hawks/Diaw situation.

    when i heard the news last night, i felt angry and found myself, like any normal 21st-century human, wanting to vent about it on the web. but then read about the situation with his kids. and then i thought about how frustrating it was every year when the draft came around, and the Suns mgmt sent pick after pick away. i don’t think it had to end this way, but it is what it is, and Nash’s age is what it is, too. at the end of the day, those old Suns teams “aren’t walking through that door.” Nash’s departure is just the final bit of a tune that started with JJ, Marion, Amare, Diaw, Barbosa, and D’Antoni leaving.

    mgmt is rebuilding quickly without having a fire sale. i like Dragic and Gordon, though Beasley i’m on the fence about Beasley, but worrying about him is much better than spending a summer hoping Marcus Banks will improve/pan out. anywho, i think the Suns are in good shape for next year.

    p.s–haters: please, think about the creeps who give Derek Fisher a hard time when he’s in Utah. don’t be those Utahans.

  • 23 shazam // Jul 5, 2012 at 10:18 am

    @ steve…u know i was just goofing on u bro
    :)

  • 24 Collin Smith // Jul 5, 2012 at 10:21 am

    Not a Suns fan, but I wanted to ask, are the four picks really that great considering they will almost definitely come in the last 10, and probably in the last 5? If the team had a chance at a lottery talent, that’s one thing, but the end of the first round is not known for having many starter-quality talents.

  • 25 Michael Schwartz // Jul 5, 2012 at 10:28 am

    @Collin It’s not “that great” but it’s an asset. Now the Suns have something in their war chest to potentially entice NO in a Gordon sign-and-trade or to potentially use to move up from their pick. Having five picks in the first round the next three years is a good thing even knowing they won’t all turn into quality players. Provides lots of flexibility, and hey, it’s a lot better than losing Nash for nothing!

  • 26 Kenny // Jul 5, 2012 at 10:34 am

    I appreciate your words! I like you, DIE HARD Suns fan. Nash is still and will be my favorite player in the game (Next to LUCKY LOU Amundson) Your words are definitely describing how true Suns fans are taking this. VERY HARD PILL TO SWALLOW although with taking pills…THEY HAVE TO GO DOWN! Like Charles, KJ, Kidd, Amare, DOUBLE J, and a list of others we’ll continue to RISE like the SUNS we are!

    KJ from Maryland! I got that nickname as a kid and kept it ever since

  • 27 Matt // Jul 5, 2012 at 10:37 am

    Guys follow my blog on constant posts and coverage on the Suns. I’m very good at this stuff and I’d love to hear your thoughts & comments.

  • 28 Kenny // Jul 5, 2012 at 10:38 am

    Props to Sarver and Nash “I hope Phoenix wins a championship real soon” I will never forget how much of a humble guy and stand out HUMAN BEING Nash is! Sarver, I couldn’t stand you at first but I love you now!!! keep up the good work

  • 29 Matt // Jul 5, 2012 at 10:41 am

    http://phxsuns1967.blogspot.com/

    This is my blog, I’m a young kid trying pursue a career as a sportswriter for ESPN. Please check out my blog, any comments & suggestions will be much appreciate it. Thank you :)

  • 30 Ty-Sun // Jul 5, 2012 at 10:41 am

    Collin, they are valuable. Certainly not as valuable as a 1-10 pick but plenty of players over they years taken with those pick have been busts and plenty of late first rounders have turned in to solid NBA starters. Nothing is absolutely certain when a player makes the jump to the NBA so it’s just the chance that you might get lucky with even the 30th pick in the 1st round gives it value. And they can be very valuable when trying to make trades. Even throwing in a 2nd round pick could be just enough to get another team to pull the trigger on a trade that you’re trying to make.

  • 31 George Z // Jul 5, 2012 at 10:44 am

    Anyone have Nash’s address in Paradise Valley, so I can go egg it? Traitor! Of all the teams to go to, he had to choose the Fakers. It may well be his right to go wherever he wants, just as it is my right to wish him the worst with the Fakers.

  • 32 Sturmtank // Jul 5, 2012 at 10:54 am

    Couple of things I’d like to mention:

    1st:
    so far, I really like the signings.

    2nd:
    there are always fans where the FO can do whatever they want, they just make bull…t.

    If they trade away the 20th pick it’s a desaster. If we geet 2 late picks it’s not worth a penny.

    If our pick at #13 was “bad” they say see even this team picked a better player with pick 29 … as if it would always be predictable.
    come on guys, be objective …

    3rd:
    as Schwartz said: It’s not “that great” but it’s an asset … and hey, it’s a lot better than losing Nash for nothing!

    Look how these late picks developed:

    2009, 17 – 30:
    Jrue Holiday, Jeff Teague, Darren Collison, Omri Casspi, Taj Gibson

    2008, 17-30:
    J.J. Hickson, Ryan Anderson, Courtney Lee, Serge Ibaka, Nicolas Batum, Donte Green,

    2007, 22 – 30
    Jared Dudley, Wilson Chandler, Rudy Fernandez, Arron Afflalo

    2006, 21 – 30
    Rajon Rondo, Kyle Lowry, Shannon Brown, Jordan Farmar

    2005, 17-30
    Danny Granger, Gerald Green, Hakim Warrick, Nate Robinson, Jarrett Jack, Jason Maxiell, Linas Kleiza, David Lee

    2004, 17 -30
    Josh Smith, J.R. Smith, Jameer Nelson, Delonte West, Rony Allen

    2010 and 2011 might be to early to judge. But there are always 5-6 very decent players in the 2nd half of the 1st round …

  • 33 Sturmtank // Jul 5, 2012 at 11:00 am

    you don’t get the franchise player, but it could very well be a starter or a solid bench player.

    look, in 2008 Beasley was #2 and the Dragon was #45
    Beasley now gets 3yrs 18 mil and the Dragon now gets 4yrs 30mil

    that shows how unpredictable the draft is …

  • 34 Ball Cruncher // Jul 5, 2012 at 11:01 am

    Shocking move. However, the signing of Dragic along with Michael Beasley on a very reasonable contract and potentially Eric Gordon as well (possibly via sign and trade using the picks acquired in the Nash trade) helps to ease the pain. The SSOL-NASH era was doomed ad nauseum from the Joe Johnson injury, trading JJ, the plethora of Amare injuries, The Suspension, the Shaq trade, the Terry Porter hooked on phonics disaster, the Ron Artest put-back / Jason Richardson massive failure to properly box out for the rebound, and on and on. We should have won a title, if not multiple, but we didn’t. As disappointing as it is to see Nash traded to the Lakers, I see two positives:

    1. (I preface this statement by believing Nash did nothing wrong by asking to sign with Lakers; his reasons and motives are entirely justified, and he was an unbelievable superstar, unlike any other in the league, for the Suns over the past 8 years!) Nash may actually win a title he rightfully deserves, so he doesn’t fall into the dreaded ‘best players to never win a title’ basement with Barkely, Malone, Stockton, etc. Yes, winning in LA, specifically with the Lakers, absolutely sucks. Nonetheless, I am a Nash fan, not just a Suns fan, and will cheer for his team to win, except when facing the Suns. There I said it.

    2. The Suns may pull off a near miracle in a fortnight by adding Gordon, Dragic, Beasley, and a multitude of draft picks depending on the outcome of the signing or S&T of Gordon. A young core of Gordon (23), Dragic (26), Beasley (23), Marshal (20), Morris (22), and Dudley (26) to go along with Gortat (28), Frye (29), and maybe Lopez (23) is not too shabby. Certainly a hell of a lot better than how our prospects looked a few days ago with Nash leaving for nothing.

    #GoSuns!

  • 35 Kyle Fleeger // Jul 5, 2012 at 11:18 am

    Today I am wearing my “Puff the Magic Dragic” T-shirt I had made when I started ifiredterryporter.com. 2 years after thinking my stockpile of shirts was useless after the awful Aaron Brooks disaster and boy does it feel good. Goran is back. He is going to be a great player for the Suns and is also exciting to watch. I can see Dragic, Gordon, Dudley, Beasley and Gortat as a great run n gun starting five who aren’t terrible on defense either. Marshall, Brown, Morris, Frye and Lopez form a decent second unity with young talent and upside.

    I am predicitng it first. Suns get Gordon and they are the 7th seed in the Western Conference next year.

  • 36 Mel. // Jul 5, 2012 at 11:22 am

    “@Collin It’s not “that great” but it’s an asset.”

    This. I’d rather see some collateral in terms of picks than find out that the Suns accepted any of the awful gristle that the Lakers are currently trying to inflict on other teams, for the sake of bringing their payroll into a manageable place.

    My biggest fear was that we’d somehow absorbed Barnes, Blake, MWP or Troy Murphy into the sign-and-trade. After the merry-go-round of the last two seasons, I’ve had a gutfull of stacking our bench with glorified role-players for the sake of making the financials work. Even when it’s a legitimate hoss like Pietrus, the team seems to have absolutely no commitment or clue to integrating them into the system in a way that capitalizes on their strengths (If they have any; not sure what Barnes and Blake are good for, aside from scaring small children).

  • 37 Aaron // Jul 5, 2012 at 11:30 am

    So whos the face of our franchise now? Dragic? Gordon? BEASLEY? Are you kidding me? I dont care where Nash goes. Hes gone. Get over it. But this organization better get a REAL star player. Honestly, they should go for Pau. It would help the future LA-PHX match up, and he would be perfect for our organization.

  • 38 Sean // Jul 5, 2012 at 11:32 am

    @Jason A. – that’s a solid analysis. I too was shocked yesterday at the Nash trade. But it’s really a good outcome for all parties involved. I feel much better about the Suns’ future today than I did a month ago.

  • 39 cha cha cha // Jul 5, 2012 at 11:39 am

    “So whos the face of our franchise now?”

    i vote for Gortat.

  • 40 Mel. // Jul 5, 2012 at 1:01 pm

    ^I second that. If not based on seniority, then based on the sheer size of his nose… which is royal in its bearing, and would look magnificent carved into some craggy escarpment in his native Poland.

  • 41 Mike M // Jul 5, 2012 at 1:17 pm

    Any person that roots for the Lakers is NOT a Suns fan. Under any circumstances. Even for Nash.

    I’m still trying to wrap my head around this whole thing and how I feel about Nash now, but I know I will be rooting for the Lakers to fail. Getting a ring with any other team is not that special, but getting one with the Lakers would just be rubbing salt in the wound and providing annoying Laker fans even more ammo against it.

    And even if you want to be “adult” or “practical” about it, the worse the Lakers are the better our draft picks are.

  • 42 Richard Dumas // Jul 5, 2012 at 1:26 pm

    @Mike M.
    I’m a suns fan as die hard as ever. I’m also a Steve Nash fan. Don’t forget the dude is the reason we even have a Phoenix suns style of basketball to be proud of. I’ll be super happy for him if he can win. Bittersweet as it would be. I wouldn’t have rooted for the lakers – I’d be rooting for Steve. Pretend it was your son playing for your most hated rival.

  • 43 Requiem for a Team: The Steve Nash-era Phoenix Suns « Hit To Left Field // Jul 5, 2012 at 2:06 pm

    [...] Some suggest that this is a great move for the team, because they get draft picks than can use to ei… I’ll agree to that, but this is more than basketball. This is civic pride. This is standing up for your hometown and your roots against a a city that is the antithesis to your own. [...]

  • 44 RayBan // Jul 5, 2012 at 2:14 pm

    As others have said, you’re a fool if you root for the Lakers – the Lakers winning means worse draft picks.

    I don’t understand the notion that we’re somehow obligated to feel happy for Nash, let alone root for him. Clearly Nash values his chances at a ring more than his previous loyalty to the Suns. I value the Suns’ future success more than previous loyalty to the Nash. Pretty simple.

  • 45 RayBan // Jul 5, 2012 at 2:15 pm

    *to Nash, not “to the Nash”…4th and July, this whirlwind of trades and emotions…long day

  • 46 Ty-Sun // Jul 5, 2012 at 2:40 pm

    The “face” of the Suns’ franchise will depend on who (if anyone) steps up and takes it upon himself to lead the team this season. Of course that person will also have to succeed too but first he will have to be the guy who wants the ball and is willing to lead instead of follow. There’s no way to tell for sure who that will be or if we will even have “that guy” on our team this year but we’ll see.

    Actually, not having Nash to count on anymore might actually be a good thing for some players. The Suns have been Nash’s team for so long that maybe some of the players relied on and at times even deferred to him more than they should have. Cleveland built it’s team around LeBron and it folded up like a cheap suit when he left and Phoenix was built around Nash BUT Steve did the Suns the favor of moving on early and worked to try and make sure the Suns got something in return when he left. At this point I believe that they Suns are already going to be a better team next year even if Gordon is stuck in NO. There’s still plenty of time to gather another quality FA or two if Gordon doesn’t get a S&T. And with a lot of teams now more worried about cap issues I think we should be able to pick up even better quality talent on one-year contracts to fill out the roster.

    BTW, does anyone have any idea what Redd’s plans are this year? If the Gordon deal falls through I certainly wouldn’t mind getting him back next year. Maybe even a two-year team option contract instead of another one year deal.

  • 47 steve // Jul 5, 2012 at 2:57 pm

    @Richard Dumas

    The Suns have been around a lot longer than Nash (and have seen glory days without him), and they’ll continue to be around long after Nash is gone.

    The franchise is greater than any single player. When Nash is no longer wearing a Lakers jersey, I’ll welcome him back to planet orange. But as long as he’s with the Lakers, I’m going to respectfully boo him at the top of my lungs. Not because I hate him, but because that’s what Suns fans do to ANY Laker.

  • 48 Ty-Sun // Jul 5, 2012 at 2:58 pm

    RayBan, nobody is telling you or anyone else they have an “obligation” to feel happy for Nash. What a lot of people are saying is that THEY really appreciate what Nash did for the Suns while he was here, THEY wish him well and really don’t understand why so many people seem to hate him for leaving a team that obviously did not really want him anymore.

    Yes, he went to the “hated Lakers” but big freaking deal. I’ve hated the Lakers for DECADES but I’m not going to suddenly start hating Nash because he’s now a Laker. I can’t bring myself to cheer for the Lakers but if the Lakers win I will still be happy for Steve.

  • 49 cha cha cha // Jul 5, 2012 at 3:22 pm

    “Clearly Nash values his chances at a ring more than his previous loyalty to the Suns.”

    first, if he was 100% absolutely loyal, he’d have never left the Mavs.

    second, he gave the franchise and the city over 400 wins in 8 years; took them to the WCF 3 times; won the division 3 times; twice vanquished the Lakers in the postseason; and won the MVP twice as a Sun.

    third, the FO let Amare, Marion, Dragic, Barbosa, and D’Antoni go, while keeping Marcus Banks and drafting Alando Tucker and Earl Clark. also, let us not forget Rudy, Deng, and Rondo.

  • 50 Ty-Sun // Jul 5, 2012 at 3:31 pm

    Wow. I just read a story on the ESPN site where Gordon voiced his desire to play for the Suns even more strongly and indicated he was not happy with NO drafting Austin Rivers, another SG/combo guard, which make him wonder what NO’s plan for him is.

    “They drafted another shooting guard, a combo guard like me, which tells me they have another plan,” Gordon said.

    To quote the article: “Paul didn’t want to be in New Orleans any longer, either, and Gordon suggested if the Hornets match the Suns’ offer and retain him, they’d be looking at a similar situation.”

    I’m certain that NO will match the Suns’ offer to Gordon but a S&T deal might be the best thing for NO as well as Gordon. Keeping a player on your team who openly doesn’t want to be there isn’t going to help attract other talent to your team. I hope the Suns are at least thinking about a 3rd team they could bring into negotiations to engineer some sort of trade that NO would be happy with that would bring Gordon to Phoenix. That might be what it ultimately takes to get it done.

  • 51 cha cha cha // Jul 5, 2012 at 3:50 pm

    the Gordon situation is sorta like the JJ/Hawks situation in reverse. can’t they just send NO Warrick and a couple picks?

  • 52 Scott // Jul 5, 2012 at 3:59 pm

    So … now all the Suns have to do is trade Childress, Warrick, Frye, and the Lakers’ picks to Dallas for Dirk ….

  • 53 Ty-Sun // Jul 5, 2012 at 4:07 pm

    I suppose the “Gordon situation” in NO depends on whether they think that they will ultimately be able to win him over and he’ll want to stay there. Obviously, drafting Rivers was a mistake if that was their goal.

  • 54 MKM // Jul 5, 2012 at 4:14 pm

    What’s plan B if New Orleans matches Eric Gordon max contract? I hope the Suns will offer Nash a 3-year contract to undo this LA trade … and use Marshall & the remaining cap space to trade for one more good player.

  • 55 cha cha cha // Jul 5, 2012 at 4:15 pm

    “So … now all the Suns have to do is trade Childress, Warrick, Frye, and the Lakers’ picks to Dallas for Dirk ….”

    seriously. Dirk lost Terry, and now Kidd.

  • 56 Ty-Sun // Jul 5, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    Lol, Scott. But Dallas is royally screwed after putting all their eggs in the D-Will basket. With Terry going to the Celtics and Kidd going to the Knicks and the ONLY real talent left in Dallas being Dirk and Marion, Dirk might actually be hoping for the Suns to at least try that trade! Even if Cuban is willing to go deep into luxury tax territory this year there just isn’t enough talent in the FA market to make the Mavs as good as they were LAST season and I think that Dirk may actually end his career wearing something other than a Mavs uni. He won’t leave this year but next year…

    … I think Dirk would look good in orange. :)

  • 57 Nick // Jul 5, 2012 at 4:33 pm

    Im pissed Nash is gone too… BUT I really believe paying that kind of money for a guy who will be 40-41 years old by the end of the contract, doesent play defense and will no longer have the Suns staff…i just don’t think this is going to put the lake show back on top. They give up four picks, have no financial flexibility, and seem to think a very OLD backcourt is going to beat the younger more athletic teams in the league. I’m going to have fun rooting against this Laker team. Puff you Nash. Good luck, but seriously puff you.

  • 58 joey // Jul 5, 2012 at 5:07 pm

    If lakers are healthy they will win the ring next year. Nash was amazing here but all things come to an end. I hate L.A. but at least he didn’t go to the spurs.lol Suns have a bright future with dragic, morris, gortat, beasley, marshall, and hopefully gordon too. Just need to get rid of childress and warrick contracts and pick up a real pf who can play in the post. Hopefully we can find another amare in the draft.

  • 59 Nathanael // Jul 5, 2012 at 5:07 pm

    After reading this (and noting that my Benedict Arnold comment was utilzed) I have reconsidered my abject anger at Steve Nash after yesterday.

    That being said, I hope he never wins a championship with the Lakers.

    I live in LA. I have lived here as a die-hard Suns fan for 10 years now. And I know how Lakers fans get. They’ve already flipped flopped from tossing gay slurs at Nash in my direction as they have in the past to mocking me and saying how good Nash is going to be with Kobe & Bynum. They will all end up saying that Kobe got Steve a ring, and not the other way around, and that will haunt me forever as a Suns fan, that Steve Nash, the guy who I defended for years in hostile territory, will have won his only championship with the player and team I despise the most.

  • 60 cha cha cha // Jul 5, 2012 at 5:20 pm

    “but at least he didn’t go to the spurs.”

    amen to that. but then again, my dislike for Kobe dwarfs my dislike for the Lakers organization in general. do you remember that Mitch Kupchak shot during the game in OKC when they eliminated LA? i could hear him thinking, “great. i’ll have to listen Kobe rant all off-season long” while the “Kidd-Bynum” video plays on repeat in the back of his mind.

  • 61 Ty-Sun // Jul 5, 2012 at 5:39 pm

    Nathanael, my advice to you is to hope that Kobe suffers a severe ankle sprain during next year’s playoffs (as much as I dislike Kobe I won’t wish any worse injury on him… or any other player I dislike). I think that Nash could lead Bynum and Gasol to a championship without Kobe. If that were to happen then anything afterward you could always point to Nash as being the REAL difference, not Kobe.

  • 62 cha cha cha // Jul 5, 2012 at 6:21 pm

    fun fact: according to basketball-reference, Kobe’s played 10,661 more minutes/111 more games than Nash, not counting All Star Games or international games.

  • 63 MKM // Jul 5, 2012 at 6:34 pm

    http://content.usatoday.com/communities/gameon/post/2012/07/steve-nash-headed-to-lakers-after-sign-and-trade-with-suns/1

    “This is what I call a family values contract,” Nash’s agent Bill Duffy told USA TODAY Sports. “He was seriously considering retiring so he could remain close to his (three) children.”

    If this is really the case, Nash should definitely stay in PHX! Why can’t the Suns offer Nash a $27 M/3 year contract while they can afford Gordon’s $58 M/4 year contract? The $31 M difference + Marshall should be enough for one more good player (how about Ray Allen?)

  • 64 A-ROCK // Jul 5, 2012 at 9:07 pm

    no one mentioned who is going to miss nash most………… Gortat lol
    He will go back to being defensive.

    I told all you busters nash will be gone, I wonder if that fool drinking nashty juice is still following nash to L.A. to drink that nashty juice from under the table hahaha

  • 65 sun also rises // Jul 6, 2012 at 2:21 pm

    roflawful @ “busters.” 1994 called, it wants its corny ass kid n’ play slang back.

  • 66 AZRogue // Jul 15, 2012 at 8:27 pm

    You know what, I’m happy for Nash. I will even swallow my hatred and wish the Lakers well, should they get a chance at the title (unless we, by some miracle, are playing against them at the time).

    Nash gave us a lot of years of unbelievable, amazingly fun to watch, incredible basketball and I am grateful that I was able to witness it. Nash will always be one of the Suns to me. Now, I really hope he gets a ring. He deserves it. He always gave us 110%. I believe it was the Suns’ management, not Nash, which dropped the ball by not giving Nash the pieces he needed to get a ring in our uniform.

    He deserves his chance and I’m happy for him. And it’s funny to see the Lakers now become “infected” by Steve Nash. Now we know: all those years when Lakers fans were hating on the Suns and Nash, they were just jealous, heh.

    Good luck, Nash. And thanks for the memories.

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