"Do people not understand there’s a difference between hitting a golf ball and playing NBA basketball?" A reporter asked Los Angeles Lakers' coach Byron Scott on Thursday.
The reporter was referring to a recent Instagram video Steve Nash posted where he hits a golf ball at a driving range (see below). The short grainy video was posted on Sunday, but it did not gain attention until after the Lakers had lost their fifth game of the season on Tuesday and had a day with no media allowed at practice on Wednesday.
Apparently, a day with no new Lakers' stories required reporters to go back a few days and point the finger at the 40-year-old Canadian who was already ruled out for the season.
"There are a whole lot of people who don't understand there's a difference between golf and basketball," Scott answered the inquisitive reporter with half a smirk. "Unfortunately, there's [sic] a lot of people out there like that."
Prior to the Lakers' final preseason game, the team announced that Nash would not play for the 2014-15 season due to his recurring back injury. By all accounts, Nash had been working his butt off throughout preseason to get right, but a decision that involved the Lakers' medical staff and Nash resulted in the future Hall of Fame point guard being ruled out for the duration of the 2014-15 season.
"The guy is hurt and can't play this year doesn't mean he can’t enjoy himself or have some fun while he's going through rehab and everything else," Scott said.
Whether he is kicking a soccer ball, swinging a golf club or even shooting a basketball, Nash is not coming back to the Lakers. No amount of golf swings will bring Nash back to the team, and the man deserves to enjoy his life, which no longer includes playing professional basketball.
Swinging a golf club at the driving range or even playing 18 holes of golf are not comparable to playing in an NBA game.
No one has ever questioned Nash’s work ethic or competitive spirit during his time in Los Angeles, and the decision to sit out the season had to be a difficult one for the Canadian. By the Lakers' account, the decision was made by the medical staff and Nash together. The decision to sit Nash was one that protected both the player and the team.
Scott concluded the conversation, "It probably doesn’t look good, but Jesus Christ! I mean, relax."