There's been a lot of talk about what Nash might have meant with his comments yesterday (posted here). Some felt he was sending a message to ownership that he's not happy and they better do something and others want to down play his comments as if nothing is wrong.
Personally, I think the truth is somewhere in the middle.
Steve's been talking about the challenges of incorporating new players and having to re-learn the team since media day so this isn't out of the blue. He's clearly frustrated by the situation and at the same time doesn't really seem to want to blame anyone. My guess is that he's simply adjusting to a new reality which differs from where his head was at all summer long. He thought the Suns were nearly a championship team and expected (or hoped) to come back and pick up where they left off. The reality he's found is that this team is going to take a lot more time to regain where it was.
He's not saying this team can't be good. He's not saying the Suns won't make the playoffs. He's saying that it's going to take some time to figure things out. He's not happy about that -- who would be -- but he's not pulling the plug or taking pot-shots at the owner. At least that's my take on things.
Now, on to the last practice before the team hit the road for the season opener tomorrow in Portland.
- "We worked really hard, we didn't play our best and we're not a finished product yet. Our results weren't good in the preseason but we worked out butts off and hopefully we put ourselves in a position to start fresh and really do well out of the gate."
- "We've got a lot of work to do and we need time but hopefully we'll be able to get out there and fight and make some things happen and win some games while we're trying to figure it out."
- The West is going to be equally or tougher than last year. The West is still stronger top to bottom than the East. The teams that didn't make the playoffs last year are pretty precocious.
Audio: Nash practice 102510
- "We'll see where we are as a team. Obviously, we have a lot of work that we still have to do. Early season schedule will give us an idea of where we need to be."
- We could use more preseason time because we have six new guys we're trying to teach to play the way we want to play.
- Josh Childress is a game time decision.
- The players from both sides (Portland or Phoenix) aren't thinking about the playoffs from last year. "I don't know if they are thinking revenge."
- "I was hoping we could gel a little bit quicker. But when you added significant guys to your team, you know we added three guys that are definitely going to play a lot of minutes for us and be in the rotation, so that gets to be hard. You want it all to fall into place and work out but sometimes it doesn't."
- Will keep working at it.
Audio: Gentry practice 102510
- Grant talked about how last season was built off the previous difficult year (08-09) and the team only added Channing while this year is much more complicated.
- "We have some great new additions but you can't just put all the ingredients in a pot and snap your fingers and expect it all to be there."
- Grant is hopeful that with the combination of good guys and talented players, it will all work out.
- "I think we spend so much time focusing on what we don't do well, we need to understand what we do do well and who we are and how we play."
Audio: Grant Hill practice 102510
- "We are small so we really have to be focused on defense."
- Hedo says he is feeling more and more comfortable with his new team but thinks it will take more time. He is focused on bringing his energy and desire every night.
- Physically, he's feeling better after a long summer and thinks that once the season starts he will have more time to recover. The Suns have practiced hard this preseason.
- Hedo said he doesn't mind at all if Gentry wants him to come off the bench.
- "I've been a team guy all my career. Whatever is good for the team, I will do it."
- Hedo is happy about Allen Iverson signing to play in Turkey. He's a Hall of Famer to Hedo so him going to Turkey is huge for the country.
- There's five guys from Turkey in the NBA. "It makes me happy, man."
- Josh did some different drills today with a rather large splint on his right index finger. He will be evaluated after today's practice. He thinks he will know by tomorrow's shoot around if he can play.
- The big issue is to make sure it doesn't get worse because if it does it could require surgery.
- When shooting, he has to pull the index finger back and shoot with the other four fingers. Everything he does on the court is painful.
- Josh said he hasn't played Halo for about a week.
- Asked about the other option, Josh said, "I do not have a left hand."