Love, however, might not be enough to save this relationship come summer. Nash is going to be a free agent in July. And even though he insists that the Suns will be on his short list of possibilities, there is a very real chance that his 10-year run (covering two different stints with the team) could have come to an end last night with that thunderous standing ovation at US Airways Center.
It was quite the scene, as Nash made clear to Paul Coro of the Arizona Republic:
“It was obviously amazing to get that type of reception and support,” Nash said. “It’s very special because it’s not something I asked for or imagined. To get that kind of reaction means it’s authentic, the relationship I thought we had. It really feels special. The fans have been phenomenal and it’s meant a lot to me to play in a city like this as long as I have and to feel important to the fans and community. I just feel like a very lucky guy.”
Lucky enough to stick around for whatever the Suns continuing rebuilding process has in store?
We’re guessing no.
That farewell salute from Nash to the fans and the praise they showered on him is an acknowledgement of his decade of service to the franchise and city as one of the great ambassadors the game has seen.
But even Suns fans know that it’s time for Nash to do a little title chasing. There’s no shame in that and absolutely no need for Nash or anyone else to hide it anymore. He’s earned the right in his storied career to finish it whenever and wherever he wants.
The only question is where that’s going to be. He’ll join a nice crop of unrestricted free-agent point guards that is headlined by Deron Williams, Jason Kidd, Andre Miller and Goran Dragic, a guest on Episode 76 of the Hang Time Podcast.
Plenty of teams will be on the hunt for point guard help this summer, some familiar to Nash and others that provide intriguing opportunities for a player who finished second in the league in assists (10.7) and shot a sterling 53 percent from the floor.
Nash will have to look at all of the potential places he could play and weigh his options as to where the best fit might be and where is the best place for him to reach the only goal remaining on his NBA bucket list (a title).
If you had to guess his final destination …