Nash Moves Up Suns' All-Time Games Played List in Loss
Posted: Dec. 10, 2010
Unfortunately, there would be very little celebrating for Steve Nash’s 628th all-time appearance in a Suns uniform Friday.
Passing Alvin Scott for sixth on the club’s all-time games played list, the Suns' playmaker and Co. fell to the visiting Blazers, 101-94. The two-time NBA MVP had a Suns-high 24 points and five assists to go along with seven rebounds in 34 minutes, as the Suns dropped to one game under .500 at 11-12 on the season.
“The difference this year is that we have a lot of new guys,” Nash said, “so there isn’t a lot of continuity. Everybody’s trying to make those new guys feel good and feel like they are important. There’s no pressure. Just go out and play. If we don’t have fun, we won’t be as good a team anyway and we won’t win as many games.
“Our team is not a muscle team. We can’t just go out there with a scowl on our faces. We need to come out with a smile, a swagger and a little bit of cockiness to go out and make shots. That includes hustling on defense and diving for loose balls to pick each other up. That’s maybe how we overcome our physical presence. We’re expecting too much instead of getting out there and letting it ride and having fun. The results will come.”
The Suns' All-Star is also on pace to register his third career season averaging 18 or more points and 10 or more assists with all three coming after the age of 31. The only other players in NBA history to record one such statistical campaign at that age or older were Magic Johnson and Guy Rodgers (1990-91, 1966-67).
When asked about turning around his team's three-game skid, Nash added, “Everyone should go into this saying, ‘When I’m out there, I’m going to play as hard as I can and then when my teammate goes out there, I want him to play as best he can.’ Feel like we’re all in this together. I’m going to do my best some nights and pick you up and other nights you’re going to pick me up. We need to be a team and play for each other.”
A SPECIAL SCREENING
Call it a prequel to the upcoming “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” Night at the Suns-Kings game on February 13, but Planet Orange was well-represented at a special screening of a three-part “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” adventure at Harkins Tempe Marketplace Thursday. Sponsored by Lucasfilm Ltd. and Cartoon Network, the sneak peek revealed “the latest villain to threaten galactic peace.”
It also featured attendees like Suns forward Hakim Warrick and Head Coach Alvin Gentry in the crowd.
“Going in, my kids were telling me all about it,” Gentry said. Between the separatist armies and the clones, Count Dooku… I’m like, ‘Yeah, yeah, I’ve got it.’ When the kids saw some special clone troopers walking out of a spaceship, they went, ‘Oh, wow! These guys are so cool.’ I know Han Solo; I know Chewbacca; I know Princess Leia. But they absolutely love the show. They TiVo it every week.”
Fans of the original trilogy that debuted 33 years ago, the Gentry family was impressed with the contingent of clone troopers (and even a working R2-D2) that also made their way to the theater. Still, the Suns head coach’s mind wasn’t completely “in a galaxy far, far away” in preparation for Friday’s match-up with the Blazers.
“I did TiVo the Portland-Orlando game last night,” Gentry smiled.
TWEETING ALL SUNS TWEEPS
Friday’s game also marked the third-annual Suns Tweet-up, presented by Discount Tire (@DiscountTire). Two-hundred-and-fifty tweeps took advantage of their special tickets, which included early entry into US Airways Center (@USAirwaysCenter) to watch the Suns’ warm up, discounted pregame “Twitter Tailgate” concessions, an exclusive #SunsTweetup T-shirt and group seating. The highlight of the evening was a postgame Q&A session with Suns forward Jared Dudley – who’s no stranger to the social-networking scene himself.
“I tweet every day,” Dudley said. “That instant access to the world… starting with MySpace, Facebook and now Twitter. It’s something you can use to brand yourself or anything you choose. Now you can upload videos and pictures. You can basically allow people into your world. It’s like a reality TV show, 24-7.”
Along that same vein, next up for the Suns is Facebook Night on January 30.
DUDLEY’S GOT IT COVERED
Jason Richardson wasn’t about to let Jared Dudley off the hook when it came to his social-networking teammate’s slam dunk pose on the Friday cover of the Suns’ official gamenight program, Free Throw.
The Suns shooting guard posted a copy of the cover art in Dudley’s locker, along with a message suggesting the photo was a bit digitally doctored.
“That dunk’s verified,” a good-natured Dudley laughed.
NATE ON BILL
Blazers Head Coach Nate McMillan matched up a few times against Suns assistant coach Bill Cartwright during their NBA playing days.
“Cartwright was a physical guy, so I stayed away from him,” McMillan said. “A lot of illegal screens.”