Is It Officially Time for Lakers Nation to Panic over Steve Nash’s Health?

Misery loves company, especially in the case of the 2012-13 Los Angeles Lakers. Kobe Bryant joined the NBA's most depressing party on April 12, when his Achilles tendon snapped during the closing minutes of the Lakers' 118-116 win over the Golden State Warriors.

The Black Mamba's tragic collapse was only the latest in a long line of calamitous injuries to have befallen the Purple and Gold during this most disappointing of campaigns.

Dwight Howard's been hampered by the residual effects of back surgery all season. In addition, Howard's had to cope with a torn labrum in his right shoulder since January, with on-court contact causing flareups in pain and occasional absences from the lineup thereafter.

Pau Gasol limped into training camp on knees that were worn out by the 2012 London Olympics, sat out eight games with tendinitis in said knees, and later missed more than a month after tearing his plantar fascia.

But the injury bug's "Reign of Terror" in the Lakers locker room began with the one player in LA whose season has arguably been the most miserable of all: Steve Nash. The two-time MVP and surefire Hall-of-Famer has been out of action since March 30 on account of hip and hamstring problems.

He'd previously sat out nearly two months after suffering a fracture in his left leg (and dealing with subsequent nerve damage) from a collision with Portland Trail Blazers rookie Damian Lillard on Halloween:

Nash hasn't exactly set the NBA ablaze this season when he's been fit to play this year, either. The interplay between Steve and Kobe had been shaky, at best, with Nash often relegated to a role as a spot-up shooter and occasional offensive operator next to the Mamba.

It should come as no surprise, then, that Nash's assist and usage numbers are at their lowest levels since the 1999-2000 season, though his shooting percentages (.497 from the field, .438 from three, .922 from the free t...

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