Steve Nash downplays whether age has contributed to injuries

Steve Nash was supposed to bring another version of Showtime to the Lakers with his dazzling no-look passes and fancy dribbling. Instead, the script has mostly involved visiting trainer Gary Vitti.

Nash has suffered a series of injuries that has kept him limited this season, including a fractured left leg (24 games) and a sore right hip and hamstring (eight games). That marks the most games he’s missed in his 17-year career since sitting out 26 games with the Dallas Mavericks in the 1999-2000 season.

Would the 39-year-old Nash attribute it to age?

“I wouldn’t want to discredit that theory,” Nash said. “At the same time, it’s very short-sighted to say that’s the reason.”

Nash described his fractured left leg as a “freak injury” in which he collided with Portland guard Damian Lillard. He missed 24 games, but Nash played three consecutive months relatively healthy.

“I’m optimistic,” said Nash, who has two years worth $19.5 million left on his contract. “I think I’ll be ready next year.”

It remains a different story as to whether Nash is ready tonight when the Lakers play Game 3 of their first-round series against the San Antonio Spurs at Staples Center. Nash is considered doubtful after receiving two epidural injections in his back and a cortisone shot in his right hip Thursday.

“I’m still in a lot of discomfort, not only from last night but from getting a bunch of darts stuck in me,” Nash said. “I have been called a doctor of chemistry by some in the media, but I couldn’t make a prediction.”

Follow L.A. Daily News Lakers beat writer Mark Medina on Twitter. E-mail him at