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Steve Nash retires after 19-year NBA career

Steve Nash bid goodbye to basketball after announcing his retirement in a letter

Steve Nash
Steve Nash

Basketball star Steve Nash has announced his retirement from the game he played for 19 years! The Los Angeles Lakers point guard wrote a letter on The Player’s Tribune website announcing his retirement. During his 19-year NBA career, he won the MVP honour twice and racked up the third-most assists in NBA history.

Nash, who has not played for the Lakers this season due to injury, will finish his career with 10.335 assists, the third-most behind John Stockton and Jason Kidd.

The 41-year-old started his career playing for the Pheonix Suns in 1996 before joining Dallas Mavericks two years later.  The 6-foot-3 point guard joined the Suns again for the 2004-05 season and remained there before his move to the Lakers ahead of the 2012-13 season for the twilight years of his career. The Lakers signed him on a three-year, $28 million deal despite his problems with injury.

The Canadian has amassed a grand total of 1217 games, starting in 1052 of them. He is the most accurate free-throw taker in NBA history with 90.4% of his free throws hitting the target. He was named as one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time. Nash captained Canada in the 2000 Olympics and received the Order of Canada, the country’s second-highest honour for merit, in 2007.

In the letter, Nash talked about working hard towards accomplishing his dream of becoming as good as his idol Isiah Thomas. He thanked his former coaches Don Nelson and Mark D’Antoni. The assist-master reminisced about his time as a rookie with Dirk Nowitzki wondering if the duo will ever make it to the top.

Nash took time out to thank his family members – a supporting sister, competitive brother, a tough mother and an athlete dad. One thing he regrets is never winning the Championship with Phoenix Suns that he feels the team deserved during his time there.

“I will likely never play basketball again. It’s bittersweet. I already miss the game deeply, but I’m also really excited to learn to do something else. This letter is for anyone who’s taken note of my career.

“At the heart of this letter, I’m speaking to kids everywhere who have no idea what the future holds or how to take charge of their place in it. When I think of my career, I can’t help but think of the kid with his ball, falling in love. That’s still what I identify with and did so throughout my entire story.”

- Steve Nash

The 2005 and 2006 MVP winner concluded his emotionally-filled letter by thanking his girlfriend Brittany for staying by his side and calling his kids – Lola, Bella and Matteo – the center of his universe. He said that all his focus and energy would be on his children from now on.

Nash will forever be fondly remembered in NBA history as one of the most prolific offences in the league’s history. He is one of the only 10 players to have won the MVP award in consecutive years.

For a full transcript of Steve Nash’s letter where he announced his retirement, click here.

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