The Lakers’ coaching staff yanked Steve Nash after just 13 minutes of play last night, as the 39 year-old point guard suffered through intense back pain. Nash will visit with a back specialist today. Per the team website and LA Daily News: “I’m concerned,’ coach Mike D’Antoni said postgame. ‘He was struggling physically tonight, you could just see it on his face and that’s why I took him out. We shut him down more or less. He was struggling.’ Steve Blake also expressed concern for his teammate. “I hate to see him struggling like that with injuries,’ Blake said. ‘Hopefully we can get him back (soon).’ […] ‘You can call it the back. You can call it the nerves,’ Nash said, referring to the feeling he still has in his surgically repaired left leg. ‘The pain in the hamstring. They’re all the same things. It gets a lot of convoluted. It’s basically the same thing.’ All that came to a standstill Sunday against Minnesota. Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni noticed Nish limping as he labored for two points on three missed field-goal attempts, two free throws and three assists in 13 minutes. Nash then sat out the entire second half to receive treatment in the trainer’s room. ‘I see his face. I’ve known him forever,’ said D’Antoni, who also coached Nash with the Phoenix Suns from 2003 to 2008. ‘When he looks like that, you know he’s trying to battle through something. We just couldn’t do it. He was struggling physically, you could just see it on his face and that’s why I took him out and we shut him down more or less.’ That left Nash second-guessing himself for playing until D’Antoni yanked him out of the lineup. ‘It was probably foolish on my part that I didn’t [ask out of the game],’ Nash said.”
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