Jun 04

Stein: Trail Blazers Among Three Teams Chasing Nash

By DHawes22 Posted in: Blazers, stevenash, Suns
Ever since the great Terry Porter left the Rose City at the end of the 1995 season, the Trail Blazers, and their fans, have been searching for the "Point Guard of the Future." Yet, 17 years later, the search still continues. Since the 2006 season, Portland has tried five different Opening Night starters: Sebastian Telfair (2006), Jarrett Jack (2007), Steve Blake (2008,2009), Andre Miller (2010), Raymond Felton (2011). That has to change. A point guard acts as a floor general, relaying the coach's orders as well as executing the game plan to a tee. It's their job to get everyone else involved and into a nice rhythm as well as figuring out the right time and place to score. For the Trail Blazers, the search to finding the ever-allusive PGOTF could come full circle the moment the free agency moratorium period ends on July 11th, 2012. And according to ESPN.com's Marc Stein, Steve Nash is atop that list.

Sources briefed on the matter told ESPN.com that the three teams with salary-cap space best positioned to make a credible run at the 38-year-old, at this early juncture, are Portland, Toronto and Brooklyn (should the Nets lose D-Will).

New York and Miami are also frequently mentioned as potential Nash destinations, but neither the Knicks nor the Heat have the requisite cap room to make a serious bid. The Blazers, by contrast, have coveted Nash for years in trades and will finally have the financial flexibility to chase him, offering the closest proximity to Nash’s Vancouver roots than anywhere else on the NBA map among other perks. Sources say that the Raptors, meanwhile, will be determined suitors in the Nash Sweepstakes, with a serious offer forthcoming to try to bring the newly installed general manager of Canada’s national team back to home soil after 16 seasons south of the border with the Suns and Mavericks.
Two things immediately jump off the page after reading what Stein had to write. First, that's heavy competition for the two-time NBA MVP. The Heat made it all the way to the NBA Finals in 2011 and are in the midst of another deep playoff run as I type this. We all know Steve is 38 years old and is wanting to finally playing under the spotlight of the Finals. And being the table-setter for Wade, James, and Bosh could end up ultimately getting him that championship he's sought after.

Then there's the Knicks. Sure, the Mike D'Antoni connection is no longer in play after he and the Knicks split ways earlier this spring, but his former pick and roll partner, Amar'e Stoudemire is in the Big Apple. Along with Stoudemire, Carmelo Anthony provides Nash with a wing outlet and Defensive Player of the Year Tyson Chandler patrols the paint, giving Nash a sense of security on defense.

And secondly, is Steve Nash the answer for the Trail Blazers? The key word in "Point Guard of the Future" is FUTURE. And despite how well Nash is playing this late into his career, their is only so much tread left on those tires.

He said many times late in the regular season that he’ll listen to any pitch that comes this summer, hoping that the next contract he signs -- preferably for three seasons -- will be his last.

One of the options I've been contemplating lately is drafting a point guard at No. 6 or No. 11 and letting the Hall of Fame Nash, should he sign in Portland, mentor him. It would be the best of both worlds. Nash runs the offense, gets everyone involved but always doesn't need to play 35 minutes (Nash hasn't logged more than 34 minutes per game since 2008) a night which would allow the rookie some meaningful training on the job before ultimately taking over a couple of years down the road. But that's my take. What do think Rip City? Would it work out? Is three years of Steve Nash better than zero years? Or should Portland look in a younger direction?


  1. I agree. Bring Nash on board for the three years and have him help unite the team and the offensive strategy! In the meantime who better would there be to learn from then Nash for our younger players. E Will will hopefully be healthy and no telling what draft day is going to bring. There is no negative aspect to getting Mr. Nash as far as I am concerned.

    peace out,

    by daddylogan on 6/4/2012 3:44 PM
  2. I like what you said about brining him in as a mentor. That's the only way I would want him. If Kendall Marshall is available at 11, I think we need to give him a long look. I think Nash could turn him into something special.

    Drummond, Nash, and Marshall would be a pretty decent haul. This would be a great roster to look to the future. The icing on the cake would be bringing in Brian Shaw to coach Drummond.

    I'd still rather have D-Will, but I think I need to realize Cuban vs Allen is like Mayweather vs Steve Blake.

    by AustinRaz on 6/4/2012 3:45 PM
  3. In my opinion, I would like to see us not draft a point guard this off-season. I would like to draft a center and a SG (not necessarily in that order) and get a point guard through free agency. By most accounts, it is a weak PG draft, and we could always look to draft a PG next year or even the year after. An experienced point guard would help mask the inexperience of the younger players, and we still have Elliot Williams that may prove to be an adequate backup at the 1 (and can play some 2 as well). We can always look to draft a point guard next year or the year after.

    by pdxpar5 on 6/4/2012 4:51 PM
  4. I think drafting a point guard in this draft would be a "reach" and there are better prospects at the 2 and 5 (and 3 and 4 for that matter.) Take the best players available.

    by pdxpar5 on 6/4/2012 4:53 PM
  5. I don't want to see us go into this season starting a rookie at the PG position. And we have so many other holes to fill, I don't think it makes sense right now to draft a young point guard AND bring in a free agent point guard. I would rather get more talent at the 5 and 2 spots through the draft.

    by pdxpar5 on 6/4/2012 4:58 PM
  6. DRAFTING a PG this year when Portland begins rebuilding is a great idea, so he can learn and grow with the team. However, I'm not sure if people feel a 2nd rounder like Machado will be a PG of the future, and there's mixed emotions about Lillard and Marshall. Having said that, I agree with others that Portland should look to fulfill the PG spot in a future draft.

    There is the possibility of signing Dragic, who could be a PG of the future, but I am not opposed to a guy like Nash or Kidd coming in to run the point until Portland does find their PG of the future. Nash or Kidd would make Aldridge (and everyone for that matter) better.

    But, realistically, will Nash (or Kidd) want to come to portland? Most likely not; they're going to want to try and get a ring before they retire. I just don't see Nash winding up here. It'd be great, it's a great idea, fans would love it, but IMO it's far-fetched.

    by boomtown on 6/4/2012 7:13 PM
  7. pdxpar5-

    Although the overall depth of the PG class is weak, I really think the top two, Lillard and Marshall will be excellent floor generals. And I've heard that Lillard's been killing it in workouts lately so I'm really intrigued to see how he performs in front of our front office.

    by DHawes22 on 6/4/2012 7:14 PM
  8. In this draft its weak pg. you can get a pg and think rebuild again by drafting a pg and training to become good. why not just get the best possible player that are good size like sg or sf example harrison barnes, players that can create their own shots. And add an already established pg this free agency like goran dragic. because if we draft a pg, we are taking a risk. Also, we need the most important position that we lost is a big man inside can help defend and rebound. a sg like jeremy lamb or sf in harrison barnes and center drummond or zeller.

    by reg828 on 6/5/2012 1:25 AM
  9. Also sign Ersan Ilyasova. hes stock is rising and becoming a very good rebounder

    by reg828 on 6/5/2012 2:36 AM
  10. If you get Nash Portland needs to enter win now mode, that means you need to need to sign Garnett and move some of your picks for a veteran like Iguodala. The with what is left of your cap space sign Ilyasova or Hickson whoever is cheaper, pick up Grant Hill, sign Danny Green and hope for a nice contributor with the #11 pick.

    Potentially you could end up with a team that is 10 deep that looks like this
    S. Nash
    D. Lillard,K. Marshall, S. Machado depending on whose available in the draft
    N. Batum
    E. Williams
    D. Green
    G. Hill
    A. Iguodala
    L. Aldridge
    JJ Hickson or E. Ilyasova
    K. Garnett
    J. Freeland

    by cmeese47 on 6/5/2012 9:49 AM
  11. how can you not love steve nash? the guy is instant offense and a future hall of famer. there's no rush in drafting a point guard if you can get somebody like nash, but if you must, i would take machado wherever he's available. he led the ncaa in assists and has more of an offensive game than marshall. marshall however is an incredible passer while machado isnt as flashy but knows exactly where to put the ball. maybe the blazers can trade down in the draft to get machado and pick up a solid bench player for the 11th pick.

    by The Unholy on 6/5/2012 10:09 AM
  12. The main reason why I want Nash is he would provide the leadership in the locker room that we haven't had since Brandon retired. I realize he's past his prime, but it's only a short, three-year investment and I think in those three years he could take LA's game to the next level and mentor his predecessor, whomever that may be.

    by DHawes22 on 6/5/2012 10:39 AM
  13. After hearing Olshey speak during his press conference, I think it's very clear the Trail Blazers will not be acquiring or pursuing Steve Nash. Neil said they are not looking for aging veterans, quick fixes and only want players who are going to be here for the long haul.

    by DHawes22 on 6/6/2012 11:41 AM
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