How Good the Dallas Mavericks Could’ve Been
By Kohl Rast
Late night thoughts usually come with hot takes right? I submit to you my readers that Steve Nash has a legitimate argument for being the best point guard in NBA history. If he had been paired with Dirk for longterm, there is no telling what kind of damage those two could’ve done together.
The NBA has been blinded long enough and it is time for people to realize just how good of a player Steve Nash was during his 18 NBA seasons. Nash was not just some random guy who put together a few great seasons. He was one of the greatest players at his position in history.
I don’t say that lightly either. There have been some amazing point guards in NBA history, including Magic Johnson, Isiah Thomas, Jason Kidd, Oscar Robertson, and John Stockton, as well as new age guards like Chris Paul, Stephen Curry, John Wall, and Russell Westbrook. And that is just naming a few to get started.
So what makes Nash one of the best of all time? The first thing that has to be mentioned is his shooting percentages. In NBA history, there have been seven total players to accomplish a 50-40-90 season, in which the player shot 50% from the field, 40% from three-point, and 90% from free throw.
The seven players who did it are Larry Bird, Mark Price, Reggie Miller, Steve Nash, Dirk Nowitzki, Kevin Durant, and Stephen Curry. Larry Bird achieved this accomplishment twice in his career, which would be impressive if it wasn’t for the fact that Nash did it four times.
Steve Nash was an incredibly well-rounded scorer, but he was an even better passer. In fact, he made some of the most incredible passes so routinely that they got overlooked as not so difficult. Just look at some of these passes from Nash to Dirk.
The other thing that people forget about Nash is that he was a very serviceable defender. Nash had quick hands and quick feet that he used to get into passing lanes and make opposing point guards pay for any lackadaisical decisions. He was an entertaining player because you always knew he was going to make the right play when your team needed it.
The last thing to mention is Nash’s tenacity. We all remember that time when he got the big gash on his nose or the time he lined up his broken nose mid-game. The dude was tough as nails.
Can you imagine if he and Dirk would’ve been able to play in their primes together? They would have terrorized the NBA and would’ve been in the discussion for best duo ever to play side-by-side on the court. Few could’ve stopped one of them but none could’ve stopped both.
In the three seasons from 2004-2007, right after the Mavs let Nash go, he and Dirk combined for all three MVP awards. There was no doubt that these two were now in their primes.
In ’05, Steve Nash was the NBA MVP and the Dallas Mavericks and Phoenix Suns met in the 2nd round of the Western Conference Playoffs where Nash’s squad took down the Mavs 4-2. Sadly, the Suns were not enough to beat the San Antonio Spurs who went on to be the champs. If Dallas has Nash instead of Phoenix, this Spurs series is a completely different story.
The next year, Nash won his second MVP title but the Mavs were the favorites to win it all after all these years. Sadly, we all know what happened. However, if Nash was playing starting point guard for Dallas, there is no way the Miami Heat could’ve dug themselves out of the grave that had been created.
Lastly in ’07, Dirk finally gets his MVP award but both the Mavs and Suns are ousted by the 2nd round of the playoffs. San Antonio went on to win another one while the Mavs started to realize the error of their ways in letting Nash go.
Next: Dallas Mavericks: Bamba Vs. Jackson Vs. Bagley
There is a lot that can be said on this topic and most of it is really disappointing and frustrating, but we should all know by know that Nash really was one of the greats when it comes to the point guard position.