Injured point guard Steve Nash (2ndR) of the Los Angeles Lakers follows the game from the bench with his teammates from left Metta World Peace #15, Jordan Hill #27, Dwight Howard #12 and Kobe Bryant #24
On Sunday night, Steve Nash ruled himself out of upcoming three-game road trip and hinted that he is at least 10 days to two weeks from returning.
"Another 10 days to two weeks?" Nash told the Daily News. "That's a total guess. Since I can't run, I'm not going to play this week."
This week, the Lakers have a three-game road trip against the Houston Rockets, New Orleans Hornets, and the Oklahoma City Thunder before returning home to face the Utah Jazz on Sunday, Dec. 9.
Expecting the Lakers to sweep four in a row may be wishful thinking. Even a clean sweep of this week would only put the Lakers at 12-9 on the season. That is hardly a record representative of the roster that was assembled in the off-season.
The current 8-9 record, however, is fully representative of the team that has taken the floor in the first month of the season. The Lakers have only put together two winning-streaks, and both streaks came during the Bernie Bickerstaff interim era. The Lakers were playing without a system in place during that stretch and seemed to have an added level of defensive intensity as a result.
Whether it was Mike Brown or Mike D’Antoni, the Lakers have sorely pined for the quarterbacking ability of Nash and lacked consistent defensive intensity this season.
D’Antoni was handed the difficult task of directing a team into a system during the middle of the season. To make matters worse, D’Antoni’s system was dependent on the point guard position, and the Lakers’ first and second choice point guards have been injured since D’Antoni took the reins.
With both Nash and Steve Blake out, the Lakers have a tough road trip this week. Considering Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder cap off three games in four nights, the Lakers would be content to return home after a 2-1 trip. That modest result would put the Lakers back at .500, which—sadly—is right where this team belongs.