Steve Nash never got a championship ring during his 18-year NBA career as a player.
It was only until last season when he earned his first ring — as a player development consultant with the Golden State Warriors. Only thing is, Nash doesn’t want to be part of the Warriors’ televised ring ceremony scheduled for Tuesday night, according to Marc Stein of the New York Times.
Stein reported that despite Warriors’ general manager Bob Myers and Warriors’ vice president of communications Raymond Ridder telling the eight-time All-Star he would be getting a championship ring, Nash would rather “stay in the background” for the actual ceremony.
“This is their moment,” Nash told Stein in a phone interview. “I couldn’t be happier to be part of a championship team and, more importantly, this championship culture.
“But when you’ve played 18 years in the NBA and you win it all as a consultant, it doesn’t feel right to do anything but stay in the background. I don’t want to disrespect anything or upset anyone, but I don’t feel like it’s my place to be there.”
Nash, who won two MVP awards with the Phoenix Suns, never even made it to the NBA Finals, but Warriors coach Steve Kerr told Stein that he understood Nash’s decision and wasn’t at all surprised.
“I don’t think Steve, for one second, looks back on his career and thinks, ‘Oh, my God, I didn’t win a ring,’” Kerr told Stein. “He has such great work-life balance. John Stockton’s the same. Charles Barkley’s the same. Is there any happier guy out there than Barkley? You can tell he’s having so much fun on TV.”
Kerr went onto say that the fans and media tend to “overrate” the whole ring ceremony in general and looking at his career against Nash’s, he would choose the latter.
“I would trade my career for Nash’s in a heartbeat,” Kerr said. “Would I want to be a role player on championship teams or be a superstar like Steve was and dominate games and seasons?
Nash has a respectable, upstanding point about not wanting to take any limelight away from the Warriors during the ceremony, but after an incredible career as a player, the least Nash deserves is that small acknowledgment of his accomplishments. After all, who would really be upset? If Nash helped the Warriors in any way to get a ring, people should celebrate his rightful place at the ceremony.