Two-time NBA MVP Steve Nash is open to a move to New York, even with the Knicks currently tight against the NBA salary cap.
The 38-year-old point guard is a free agent this summer, meaning that he could be completing a long rumored move to the Knicks within the next few weeks. Despite his age, Nash remains one of the top point guards in the NBA and is seen as the ideal player to get the ball into the hands of stars Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire. He has also been linked to Brooklyn and he admits that either the Knicks or Nets could be suitors when free agency opens on Sunday.
“I would think [so],Nash said when asked if he would consider the two teams. “I would meet with them if they’re interested. We’ll see what happens on Sunday. I’m looking forward to seeing what teams are interested and what they have to say.”
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Last season, with a Suns team that went 33-33 and finished 10th in the Western Conference, Nash still managed 12.5 points per game and his 10.7 assists per game was above his career average. He can still contribute and therefore still command a lucrative free agent deal, but Nash, who has never won a title in his 16 NBA seasons, wants to play for a contender. He admits that there are other factors in play than just a shot at a ring.
“There’s not one important. There’s so many between family, environment, team, chance to win, a contract,” Nash said. “When you try to reconcile the factors that’s the way you can start to rank the situation that fits you the best.”
A move for Nash will be complicated by the Knicks’ lack of cap space. With two maximum contracts in Anthony and Stoudemire, there isn’t much space to bring in a player like Nash. Steve Novak and Jeremy Lin won their Bird rights hearings, which is a positive for the Knicks, but still only allows the team to offer Nash their mid-level exception of about $3 million. Nash made $11.7 million last season, so that would be a significant pay cut.
There’s also the issue of Lin, who was a surprise starter by the middle of last season and became a fan favorite in running an up-tempo offense.
When asked by Metro New York if having a point guard like Lin already on the roster would be a factor in his decision, Nash doesn’t see an issue with coexisting with Lin on the court.
“I don’t think [it will]; I don’t. I want to hear what everyone thinks, what they -- the coaches -- say, what the front office says,” Nash said. “It’s not just one factor. Jeremy himself wouldn’t be a deterrent to come.”
Follow Kristian Dyer on Twitter @KristianRDyer.