After six profitable seasons with the Dallas Mavericks, in 2004 Steve Nash left for the Phoenix Suns. His tenure in Dallas included two All-Star Game appearances and being named to the All-NBA crew twice. The Mavericks made the Western Conference Finals in 2003 with Nash main their offense.
Mark Cuban declined to supply Nash a brand new contract attributable to issues about his well being going into his thirties. “I’m actually unhappy to go away my teammates, however I’m glad to be going someplace the place they actually needed me,” Nash mentioned at the time. Nash went on to win consecutive MVPs with the Suns.
Things labored out for the Mavericks. They went to the Finals in 2006, and gained a championship in 2011. But all of us nonetheless marvel—what if Nash never left Dallas?
There are straightforward issues to say. Nash in all probability never wins an MVP award if he stays in Dallas. Despite his unimaginable ability, there isn’t any means he would have the potential to place the form of numbers wanted to win MVP. The Mavericks’ offense would all the time revolve round Dirk Nowitzki, regardless of how a lot Nash improved. With his measurement and ability, Nowitzki was the extra elite participant.
“Sometimes you assume Nash, the participant he developed, changed into in Phoenix was unbelievable. I feel the athletes he had round him, we did not have right here. He was a two-time MVP. That system and what that they had round him was completely good…” Nowitzki mentioned years later.
The Mavericks may not have gained a championship, both. Through Nash’s six years in Dallas, the Mavericks solely made it to the third spherical of the playoffs as soon as. Dallas would discover success in later years by surrounding Nowitzki with 4 different gamers who might defend at a excessive stage. Defense was never Nash or Nowitzki’s power.
As the playoffs progress, groups grow to be more proficient at attacking weaknesses on the defensive finish. You can get away with one common defender, particularly if they’ve measurement. But if two of the 5 gamers on the flooring might be uncovered on protection, the offense has too many choices. And regardless of their potential to attain, Nash and Nowitzki made it onerous for the Mavericks to get constant stops on protection towards the elite groups in the late rounds of the playoffs.
Maybe the Mavericks find yourself like the Utah Jazz of late, flaming out many times in the playoffs whereas holding onto the dream that continuity would give them a bonus. But we might get a variety of enjoyable tales of Nowitzki and Nash on the court docket collectively, in addition to out on the city. That is, till Nash was traded as a result of it simply wasn’t understanding.
That’s the factor, once we think about these “what if” situations, we are inclined to bend in the direction of the constructive. It not solely works out for everybody, it really works out in nearly fairytale style. Nash and Nowitzki do not simply win one championship collectively, they win three. Nash retires and takes over as coach, they usually win one other couple. And so good.
What if Nash stayed, and issues labored out together with your school girlfriend, and your finest pal never moved away, and also you took that job with the startup that took off. The factor is, it nearly never works out such as you assume it would. The undeniable fact that the Mavericks obtained their fairytale ending in 2011 is superb in itself. It’s a uncommon factor in sports activities.
Nash would have continued to place up numbers in Dallas. He and Nowitzki would have gained a variety of video games collectively. And perhaps one yr, issues would have damaged proper for them. The two of them would have held the Larry O’Brien trophy collectively, smiling, beaming with delight over what they’ve completed. An ending that solely Hollywood might write. What if that had occurred.