Mike D’Antoni thinks Steve Nash’s true potential wasn’t harnessed in Phoenix
Steve Nash and Mike D’Antoni were together for four years with the Phoenix Suns. During that time together, plenty of quality basketball was played.
Nash won back to back MVP awards and helped lead the Suns to the Western Conference Finals. As impressive as that was, D’Antoni actually thinks he held Nash back, and if they were together now, things would be different.
“Oh, without a doubt, I screwed that up,” Mike D’Antoni told Tim MacMahon of ESPN. “Nash was a purist. Steve’s a Hall of Fame point guard. He was unbelievably good. I just think instead of averaging 15 or 16 [points], he could have averaged 30 for us. He was that good of a shooter, and I don’t think it would have screwed the team up.”
As good as those Steve Nash passes were, it made people overlook how good of a scorer he actually was. During his time with D’Antoni, Nash only averaged 12.4 field goal attempts per game, but there was definitely room for him to shoot a lot more.
D’Antoni isn’t the only one to have regrets, Nash also agrees that he could have played the game a bit different.
“We know better now,” Steve Nash said. “The math’s been validated, and I think that’s why point guards are so aggressive. It makes sense. We stuck to our traditional values, and that allowed me to stick to my personality, whereas I should have come further and further out of my personality.”
Nash still had an unbelievable career, but it could have been that much better if he would have played just a few years later.
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