Nash Said He Never Dreamed of Winning MVP
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Suns point guard is first non-American to receive award
Nash Says He Never Dreamed of Winning MVP
By Mike Tulumello
East Valley Tribune
May 8, 2005
To become the most improbable most valuable player in NBA history, you probably need a motto. Or, more precisely, a life creed.
In acknowledging his big win on Saturday, Steve Nash seemed at first lost for words. Then he hit it on the head:
"I don’t know what to make of it. I had one scholarship offer. I didn’t have any NBA players in my neighborhood.
"To be considered for this award. . . . I don’t ever think I dreamed about it, so I don’t know what to say . . . other than I just kept trying."
Nash’s life-long efforts resulted in him becoming the first non-American to win and only the second small point guard (Hall of Fame Bob Cousy was the other).
Nash credited his team’s big year for the honor. Just as significant, he suggested the results are a vote for an unselfish, up-tempo style of play.
"I definitely won this award because of my role on this team," Nash said.
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"I didn’t win because I overpower people or by dominating the game with physical ability, whether it’s jumping ability, strength or height.
"To be considered in the setting of how our team plays, it’s a testament to the game of basketball.
"Our team couldn’t come close to 60 wins if we didn’t share the ball and play together. It’s great for the sport."
As the most accomplished player ever from Canada — he’s from Victoria, British Columbia — he said, "There’s no better feeling to make your whole country proud. It’s an incredible amount of positive energy coming my way."
Even so, he reiterated that he probably would have voted for Shaquille O’Neal, the second-place finisher:
"He’s one of the greats ever to play the game. He’s a hero in many ways," Nash said.
"He’s a huge part of this game’s history already. He’s one of the very best personalities and players in this game’s history."
Teammates and coaches pointed to Nash’s leadership and the team’s dramatic 33-win improvement (from 29 to 62 wins) as the reasons for the award.
"We caught fire all year, and he played unbelievably," Suns coach Mike D’Antoni said.
"He had great finishers with him. Guys made him look good, and he made them look good.
"It was a storybook year."
"It’s more like a team award," Amaré Stoudemire said. "But Steve is the motor.
"He has the ball in his hands 80 percent of the time. He gets everybody involved and makes his teammates better."
The formal announcement of the award will come at 1:30 p.m. today.
COPYRIGHT 2005, EAST VALLEY TRIBUNE. Used with permission.