What Steve Nash Must Do to Bounce Back in Mike D’Antoni’s Offense

Steve Nash did not play up to his capabilities in 2012-13 with the Los Angeles Lakers. There are a couple of things he can do to bounce back in Mike D’Antoni’s offense.

The biggest obstacle Nash faced in his first season in Los Angeles was a lack of touches. D’Antoni ran the offense through Kobe Bryant and tasked him with most of the playmaking responsibilities. That meant Bryant was responsible for setting up Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol.

Thus, because Bryant handled the ball most of the time, Nash was relegated to the role of floor spacer.

Synergy Sports tells us that 17.8 percent of his field goals came in spot-up situations. That is the highest share of these types of shot attempts Nash has recorded since Synergy Sports began tracking the stat in 2009-10.

The former Phoenix Sun is a deadly shooter. He certainly affects the way opponents defend the Lakers, but this is not the best use of his talents.

Howard is now a member of the Houston Rockets. That means Nash will have to carry a bigger load offensively. The three-time Defensive Player of the Year’s touches will be redistributed amongst the core of Nash, Bryant and Gasol.

Nash is a terrific ball-handler and setup man as evidenced by his career 8.5 assists per game. Thus, putting him in the pick-and-roll and allowing him to occasionally isolate his defender is a terrific way to exploit defenses.

Nash is a clever passer who is always looking for his teammates. When defenses adjust in an attempt to take away his passing angles, the future Hall of Fame point guard looks for his own shot.

Nash is a career 49 percent shooter overall, so it is in the Lakers' best interests to have him go on the aggressive every now and then. Nash’s usage rate in 2012-13 was on par with his rookie season, which speaks to his reduced role with the Lakers.

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