Divorce Reno-style or via mediation is said to be a relatively no-muss, no-fuss affair. Divorce that ends up in court can get nasty, with accusations and recriminations flying as fast as the dollars that circle the drain.
The end of Steve Nash’s memorable run in Phoenix veered into divorce court Thursday as the veteran point guard offered background on his surprising sign-and-trade move to the Los Angeles Lakers. The Arizona Republic‘s Paul Coro has more details about the former two-time MVP’s departure from Arizona:
Steve Nash’s evident departure from the Suns turned into a slow death, capped with a twist of the knife when he and the Suns chose the enemy for his next destination.
Do explain how you are a Los Angeles Laker, No. 13.
Like fans who chanted “We want Steve” in his final Suns game, Nash said Thursday that his first wish was to remain a Sun.
…“I never saw this coming so I’m still not completely through the process of realizing this is a reality.”
Sounds a bit like, oh, countless stunned ex-spouses caught unaware when the papers got served, don’t you think?
As Nash hit free agency, more curious about his options and value than committed to leave, Nash apparently didn’t realize that he no longer figured in Phoenix’s plans. He said the Suns didn’t made him a contract offer to head off his free look at the market and then weren’t inclined to go as long (three years) or pay as much (up to $28 million) as the Lakers.
Truth was, Nash at 38 didn’t fit in the blueprint that managing partner Robert Sarver and the Suns’ minority owners have for the club. That’s when relocating, with an eye on his two young children’s whereabouts in Phoenix (via a real-life divorce from their mother), became a reality for Nash, as Coro wrote it:
“A head’s up that they were moving on would’ve meant a lot to me. I don’t have any problem with them going in a new direction. It takes guts to do it. They got younger and more talented. I’m excited for them and Suns fans that they’ll be back in there.”
Three years at great money, an hour’s plane ride to see his kids and a chance to run an offense with weapons such as Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, Andrew Bynum and possibly Suns teammate Grant Hill already has Nash looking forward. He thinks the hyper-competitiveness he’s felt vs. Bryant will simmer and blend just fine as teammates.
But the way his exit from Phoenix came about still seems to be simmering, or festering, too.
“I did want to come back, move the franchise forward and leave it in a better place than the past two seasons. The Suns knew that. Once I realized they were going in a new direction, I got used to the idea that I’d be elsewhere. It’s still going to take time to get used to.”