Persisting nerve issues in his back will ensure Steve Nash misses at least the next five games, providing more uncertainty on whether the Lakers’ 39-year-old point guard can overcome an injury that has already sidelined him for nearly two weeks.
Nash will continue rehabbing with his personal trainer Rick Celebrini in Los Angeles this weekend, while the Lakers play a pair of home games Friday (vs. Golden State) and Sunday (vs. Sacramento) at Staples Center. Nash will then train in Vancouver during the Lakers’ trip next week to Washington (Nov. 26), Brooklyn (Nov. 27) and Detroit (Nov. 29).
“He’s progressing,” Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni said. “Steve is still in the process of working out and getting back. He’s not in gear yet.”
What still has held Nash back?
“Conditioning and trying to get over the nerve pain and get his body aligned,” D’Antoni said. “It’ll probably be another week or 10 days and then he’ll try it. If it works, it works. If not, he’ll go back and try it again.”
Nash left the second half of the Lakers’ loss Nov. 10 against Minnesota after experiencing additional pain in his back. But he’s battled ailments all season, including his back, nerve issues in his left hamstring and surgically repaired left leg, neck stiffness and a sore left ankle. Nash has averaged only 6.7 points on 26.1 percent shooting in 22.5 minutes through six games.
Even with the persisting injuries, the Lakers and those close to Nash insist he has not considered retirement. He has two years remaining on a contract that will pay him $19 million, though the Lakers could waive him this offseason via the so-called “stretch provision.”
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