Thursday, 12 July 2012
NASH BRIDGES (THE GAP)
BY TIM DAVID HARVEY
Superstars come and go in this league. Most make their mark but some fall by the courtside. There are legends and then there are legends of the fall. Sometimes hype becomes humiliation. Sometimes great expectations become 'quantities of debt', word to Charles Dickens. Number one picks sometimes become zero's and starters become 'did not play-coaches decision'. Sometimes being the first one to enter the gym becomes being the last one to leave the club. Throughout all this however-even with the Hollywood hype that comes with a Laker move to Los Angeles-Steve Nash remains Steve Nash.
This Summer for the 2012 Olympics in London all the talented Basketball nations of the world will duke it out (What's up Coach K?) for those once in a four year, career lifetime gold medals. Whether it is the old glory of the USA, the samba of Brazil, or 'dos celebración' for Spain (nice World Cup/Euro win this year) one thing will remain the same. The greatest Canadian player of all-time will be watching, waiting and working. Still on his grind at 36 years old. Still in the gym 14 years deep. Still the last one out.
This year the news in the NBA will be dominated somewhat by bad press and scandal. Referees may blow the whistle on certain allegations, books may be written. Players may brawl on court and some team-mates may take it to the locker rooms, but as some players bring it to pistols the only thing one player will be shooting is the lights out. Passing like the second coming of Pete Maravich. As other guys try and look macho behind some b.s. behavior one number 10 will top them all, making shot's that doubters didn't think he had in his arsenal (fellow soccer fan Kobe knows how he shoots and scores). Unlucky for some the former number 13 aint playing...figuratively speaking.
The league may have been locked out this season gone and close to being cancelled like most American television dramas but don't lie to me. You know Steve Nash still locked it down on the court (when allowed), defensively, offensively and anything in-between and required. Some big egos will carry a chip on their shoulder but through all this one thing will remain constant. Once financial business was settled and we got back down to basketball business Steve Nash carried nothing but his entire team on his skinny frame, 1 through 15. No chip on his shoulder, no heavy heart. A free mind like his freewheeling Dylan style. No grudge, just a match. Believe that.
There will be draft picks making their mark in this league, players breaking out and superstars becoming celebrities. Players will have off nights and career nights. Throughout all this though Steve Nash will give his all. 100% for 82 plus (24 and 48 too). When others become MVP's, the former back to back 'Most Valuable' will play like this when critics are watching someone else, like the guy next to him in the backcourt. All whilst this team leader will graciously pass off the ball and the glory to someone else too. Whether they be named Kobe, Metta, Pau, Andrew or Dwight.
When others go cold Steve will heat up on his teams request taking the scoring load if needed. When other players in this league have 'Player of the Night' games and reap all the glory Steve Nash will stay on defense and guard that best player. Taking the hits, taking the buckets and taking the loss if need be, because that's the seeds a dedicated worker must sow. You've got to take the good with the bad. You have to be there, not only in the happy times but the sad ones as well. A true professional gives his all on either side of a blow-out whereas a bust just blows hot and cold. Highlight of the week players may make ESPN and flavor of the month players may make it on to some kid’s wall. Steve Nash however will make the Hall. The lane is clear for him...there's already a street in L.A. bearing his name.
Teams will make the playoffs and teams will take lottery tickets. Teams will make the finals and teams will go fish like Derek making or missing in the clutch. There will be a champion and there will be a first loser. Throughout all this Steve Nash will take the Lakers back to the golden days. Steve will remain hot in California even if things on the floor get cold. First round, second round or more Nash will leave it all on the floor. Sweat soaked, Gatorade drunk, legs tired and ankles gone. He'll give his all. Even if his nose is bust by a San Antonio Spur. Even if a 'Where Amazing Happens' border becomes 'Where getting checked hard happens'. Even if he gets knocked down Steve will get back up. Down and blown out it won't be over for Steve until the final buzzer sings. A loss won't be a loss for Nash until it's recorded in the box score. Other plays may have a different opinion; these other players merely give in so give it up for Steve Nash.
Give it up for a guy who keeps it 100 when others are thinking 99.999. Give it up for a guy that may look like a surfer but is all ball like a Kobe Bryant foul at STAPLES. A skater boy that says "see you later boys" to the competition, making fellow Canadians proud like Avril, while opponents look for the Advil. Yeah sure this is a headache, but he's the remedy. Sure there are more who play like him, but there's no one quite like Steve Nash in this league. Sure others may dunk while he lays it in, and others may take all the glory while he hustles but name another player who works as hard as Steve does? At his age, at his position and with all the abuse he takes and has taken Steve still has nothing but love and dedication for this league.
Next season some players will make magazine covers, highlight reels, YouTube footage, tweets and forum posts and then tomorrow who knows. This is the life for certain celebrities or stars, or most 'baller's and 'demigods'. Throughout all this however one thing again will remain the same. Nasty Nash will be in your area, about to cause mass hysteria because Steve Nash bridges the gap and it 'aint hard to tell. Just look at the ESPY's red carpet. Just ask Nas.
Life is good.