Steve Nash and Jason Terry are aging veterans on the downside of stellar NBA careers. Both players are set to become free agents this summer, and with neither ready to hang up his sneakers just yet, they’re keeping their options open.
One of the top point guards in the game over the last decade, Nash has the steady hand and passing ability that teams with championship aspirations need. The Miami Heat are one such team, but would a move from the desert to the beach make sense for the 38-year-old point guard?
“I would listen,” Nash said when asked how he might respond to a request from LeBron James to join the Heat during a radio interview Thursday on “The Dan Patrick Show”. “He’s phenomenal. I love what they’re doing there. A lot of people don’t like them because they put all that talent there. But they’re professional, they play hard, they play together. Their coaching staff has done a great job, so I have a tremendous amount of respect for them.
“I would definitely listen.”
Nash, who is sixth on the NBA’s career assist list with 9,779, is in the final year of his contract with the Phoenix Suns and told Patrick that he would not return “if there isn’t improvement.”
While Nash could be the distributor the Heat lack, Terry could provide an outside shooting boost off the bench.
A year after winning the franchise’s first championship, the Dallas Mavericks are struggling and Terry knows he may need to look elsewhere for employment this summer.
“No question, they need a veteran shooter, a guy who can score besides LeBron and (Dwyane Wade), and they know they can count on,” Terry told FOX Sports’ Chris Tomasson before the Heat blew out Dallas 106-85 on Thursday night. “I’m a guy that’s been in this league 13 years, (averaging) 15 points a night, easy. Off the bench or the starting lineup, it doesn’t matter. So I think I’d be an asset to them.”
After the game, Terry changed his tune a bit, telling Tomasson the Mavericks “said they want me back. But you can say all you want, you got to she me. Like Jerry Maguire said, ‘Show me the money.’”
Terry, 34, is sixth on the NBA’s all-time three-point shooting list and a lifetime 38 percent shooter from beyond the arc. The Heat shoot 37.8 percent as a team, which is fifth-best in the league, but make only 5.7 per game (20th). Terry is averaging two made threes per game this season and can still catch fire to carry his team at times.
But it’s easy for a pair of fading stars to day dream about joining a team many believe will win the NBA title this spring. Whether its financially possible for the Heat two add two more high-priced players is another thing entirely.
Miami will not have any salary-cap space in the summer of 2012, meaning Nash or Terry would have to settle for the mid-level exception whereas they could get far more from another team.
Should Nash or Terry take a pay-cut to make a run at a championship in Miami, assuming the Heat make them an offer this summer? Wish player would be a more valuable addition to the Heat’s title aspirations?
(H/T Ball Don’t Lie)