This is what happens when you’re the oldest dude still playing in the NBA (for a team absolutely riddled with injuries). You tweak your back while getting out of bed on a Monday morning, and can’t practice. Welcome to soon-to-be 40-year-old Steve Nash’s life. Per the LA Times:
“I’m fine,” said Nash later in the day. He last played Nov. 10 and has played in only six games this season, while battling through nerve damage in his back and hamstring injuries.
The Lakers now expect Nash to practice Thursday with a possible return Friday at Staples Center against the Charlotte Bobcats.
“I have no idea what’s going to happen, but I’ve done all the work and I feel ready to practice again,” said Nash, who has been rehabilitating away from the team in Vancouver, Canada. “I’m really excited, just to be part of the team again.”
Nash isn’t expecting to retire — his guaranteed contract runs through the 2014-15 season — and the Lakers are doing whatever they can to help him return to full strength.
Should a doctor determine that the only solution to Nash’s chronic back issues is retirement, and an NBA-appointed physician agrees, the two-time NBA most valuable player’s entire $9.7-million salary for the 2014-15 season will come off the Lakers’ books in late April — provided that Nash plays fewer than 10 games this season for the Lakers. Of course, none of that matters if Nash is healthy. He is averaging 6.7 points and 4.8 assists this season.