OK, I was posting over on NBA Fan Voice and was discussing the All-Star reserves. I didn't like a few of the comments over there regarding Steve Nash, and so I decided to write my own post. I hit the button, started typing... and kept typing... and kept typing. And this is what I came up with. I haven't written anything in a long time, unfortunately, due to school, so I thought might as well share this here as well. I'm not going to edit it and adjust it for BSotS because it's late and I'm too lazy, but here you go. Enjoy, and let me know what you think.
I've seen quite a few comments around here that "Steve Nash hasn't done anything this year" or something to that effect. This is mostly during discussions regarding the All-Star Game and who should make the team. I'm not saying he is without a doubt the right choice, but he's no chopped liver either. Here is his stat line for this season:
16.8 ppg, 3.7 apg, 11.1 apg, 3.7 tos, .7 spg, .526 fg, .408 3fg, .916 ft, 33.3 mpg, 37 years old.
17, 11, and 4 is not too shabby, especially when that 17 per is coming on another 50-40-90 season. He was scoring a lot early when the team was a mess, and now he is content to pass it around and get Gortat those monster numbers.
He is 2nd in the league in assists, and after watching both the Celtics and Suns, his 11 impress me a lot more than Rondo's 12.5. He really does have to work hard to get a lot of those asists, and with 4 HOFs around him I have no doubt he'd be in the 13-14 range (Rondo's turning it over more than he is as well). He no longer has Amar'e inside nor J-Rich on the perimeter, yet he is making Gortat look like an All-Star and is succeeding with very little production from the SG position (feel free to start contributing any time now Carter, unless you WANT to be lit on fire).
Steve has also upped his rebounds this year and is helping out what can at times be a pretty bad rebounding front line. His defense (which isn't as bad as people seem to think) has been quite decent for much of the season. He now has a legitimate defensive presence in the paint, so he doesn't have to double every possession and actually has some back-up when he gets beat.
For most of the year, the Suns have been an absolute mess. Coming into the year, the roster was way unbalanced with no size and a glut of wings. The team struggled, injuries occured, rotations changed, a trade went down, rotations changed, and rotations changed yet again. Yet Steve Nash held the team together throughout all the turmoil and now that the team has found some consistency, they find themselves back on track to possibly challenge for a playoff spot. He has also done this with very little bench production. The chemisry that marked last year's team is gone for the most part, and the bench has struggled in a big way. Goran Dragic in particular has greatly disappointed. It seems like every time Nash takes a seat the team falls apart and can't score.
I'm not saying that Steve Nash is unquestionably the correct choice for the open Western Conference roster spot, and I'm not going to attempt to murder a representative of the NBA if he isn't chosen. Honestly, I don't really care that much if he doesn't make it, as he could do with some rest. But Steve Nash HAS had an All-Star season this year. Is it deserving of of one of the 12 roster spots for the game? Perhaps, perhaps not.
There also may be more than one opening for the team this year. Yao Ming is missing the game for sure. Steve could be the one to replace him, but replacing Yao with another big (such as LaMarcus Aldridge or Kevin Love) is the more likely decision. But Deron Williams, who was selected for the team by the coaches, is currently injured and I don't know when he will get back to speed. Will he be out until after the All-Star Break? Or if he does come back, does he elect to sit out and continue to recover? Here are Williams' numbers:
21.9 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 9.4 apg, 3.4 tos, 1.2 spg, .467 fg, .366 3fg, .855 ft, 37.7 mpg
One could argue that Nash is more deserving than Williams anyway, as scoring is really the only category that Williams controls, in nearly 5 more minutes of playing time to boot. If Williams can not go, is Nash the one that takes his place?