Talk Show: Steve Nash

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — If you want to find Lakers PG Steve Nash in the summer, a good bet is to look somewhere around a soccer field. Not only is Nash a part-owner of the MLS Vancouver Whitecaps, but Nash has always loved playing the beautiful game, so much so that each summer he organizes the Steve Nash Foundation Showdown to benefit his charitable foundation.

Nash is in New York City today to train with Inter Milan, in conjunction with the Guinness International Champions Cup. We grabbed a few minutes with Nash this morning…

Steve Nash Foundation Showdown GameME: So run this down for me: You’re trying out for Inter Milan today?

NASH: (laughs) Sort of, yeah. I think that’s the way it’s being labeled, but it’s more of an honorary tryout, more like I’m going to go practice with them. But yeah, I’m looking forward to it.

ME: What position do you play in soccer?

NASH: Anything attacking. More like a midfielder, but anything going forward.

ME: So like a true number 10, sort of?

NASH: Yeah! I mean, in my youth, yes.

ME: Did you see Nate Robinson is going to wear number 10 in honor of Messi?

NASH: Yeah, I did.

ME: I remembered Nate playing in the Showdown a couple of years ago — I didn’t know if you put him on to soccer?

NASH: (laughs) Right, he’s converted now.

ME: I’ve been talking about soccer with you for over a decade. You’ve seen the growth of soccer in the States over that time, and now you’re involved with MLS. Do you think soccer has turned a corner in the States in terms of popularity?

NASH: I think the game’s growing incredibly. The exposure, the amount of games you can watch on TV. One of the kind of alarming things to me is just — I mean, it’s on the ticker on “SportsCenter.” When I was in college you’d never see a soccer score on the ticker. Now, every day there’s a soccer result on the ticker on “SportsCenter.” And yeah, that kind of says something about the solidity the game has in the States right now. It’s going in the right direction.

ME: I know basketball has become really popular in Canada, and I was wondering is there any sort of similarity between the growth of basketball in Canada and the growth of soccer in the States?

NASH: Yeah, I guess in some ways. Soccer was always pretty big in Canada. Not that we’re a soccer power, but the game was big. Basketball is taking a soccer-like turn in Canada, the way soccer is growing in the States. I think a big part of it was having the Raptors and the Grizzlies in Canada, which really gave kids a lot of exposure to the game but also something to strive for. I also think the internet over the last ten years — there’s no more secrets. Kids can go online and see the best kids of their age groups, or best practices, and I think kids have taken that opportunity and run with it.

ME: How are you feeling, physically?

NASH: Good, coming around. Good enough to embarrass myself on the soccer field. I’m not quite 100 percent, I can’t quite sprint, but I’ve been able to train around it, so I’ve made a lot of progress in other ways, and hopefully in the next three or four weeks I should be one hundred percent.

ME: What kind of forecast can you give us for the Lakers this season?

NASH: I think everyone’s kind of counting us out, which is fine by me. I think it’s good for us to fly under the radar a little bit. We’ve got a lot of new pieces, we’ve got guys coming off injuries, myself included. So we’ve got to find out where everyone’s health is, and then figure out each other and play together, and hopefully we can surprise some people.

ME: Last thing: What is it like being around Kobe Bryant, being around someone with that singular of a drive?

NASH: I think people kind of know what he’s like. He’s very single-minded, he’s very prepared, very intense. You can feel it, you feel the intensity. I think that’s what people expect and that’s what he is.

18 Comments

  1. Lakers says:

    Nash..remember this…good or bad, tough or easy…the Lakers will always be in the spotlight. Lakers don’t fly under the radar. So don’t tell me you’ll be surprise again this coming season to find that the Lakers are still in the spotlight and you’re not doing well.

  2. This guy plays football really well. At least, he is very technical (you can find some videos on the Internet).
    It would be fun to get to watch him training with Inter Milan team.

  3. vincent says:

    GL Nash, hope next season is well.

  4. Maybe I’m just crazy, but I honestly feel like Lakers could have a much better season next year. Chances are it won’t be just as crazy as this year and that means more time with the same guys on the court developing chemistry. If the Lakers can get some consistentency in terms of who’s playing when and doing what, it’s not like their roster sucks. Don’t expect them to go deep into the playoffs, but don’t count them out either. Gasol and Kobe are still there, Nash, Earl Clarke could have a more significant role and who knows what he can do if he can play from the start? And Jameson and Meeks are still good shooters. Lakers could really surprise people. I honestly don’t see them doing worse than this season.

    • max says:

      I hope you are right about Earl Clark, I heard he got traded. Sure hope that is wrong, I think he was good for the Lakers.

    • Lavenderpoland says:

      Earl Clark isn’t a Laker anymore, He is in Cleveland. And if you think Lakers be better coming season, you’re gonna have a bad time

    • Sam says:

      Earl clark went to cleveland. Just to let you know.

      • max says:

        SAM? who allowed this guy or whatever he is to comment on a public forum? SAD. I think the Lakers have to think positive. Look at all the NBA teams that finished worse? Comment : I think we will be better! That takes belief. The fool who does not believe in a better future, well see if this network can find him a job a wal mart! NO MORE SAM!

      • max says:

        sorry Sam, I mixed up your comment with the Idiot above your comment by mistake. I mean my above comment for Lavenderpond. What kind of name! is this person human????

  5. Earl C says:

    You mentioned me and it made me feel great.

    • Max says:

      Lakers should NOT have traded Earl CLARK! That Kentucky boy is just getting started. Big help last year for the Lakers.

  6. max free agents says:

    Earl Clark signed with the cavs a month ago. Lakers wanted to keep him but they want to able to sign two max free agents next year.

    this year lakers will tank, meaning do bad on purpose.

  7. AckWright says:

    The Lakers will be better next year purely for the fact that they wont be as screwed with all the injuries, keep in mind their still old but they wont have to depend on Darius Morris and Andrew Goudelock or whatever as backups at the guard spots. We dont have Howard but I think the Lakers will be better next season. Though they probably won’t make it out of the first round with the West being such a hard conference. Just a realistic Lakers fan.

  8. Steven says:

    I think it’s tough to go far about Lakers in next season.
    they too old, can not defence other young team.