Sunday night in Phoenix featured a classic case of the young gunning, newest and brightest thing on the block -- aka John Wall -- testing his rookie mettle against the venerable Steve Nash. Once again, experience and Canadian craftiness won the day.
Nash finished the game with a perfect 8-for-8 shooting (20 points) to go along with 17 assists and just two turnovers, neither of which were caused by Wall. Steve recorded an outstanding 1.82 points per possession, which puts to shame John Wall's own .60 ppp on his 12 points on 4-12 shooting.
Defensively, Wall was completely lost against the cagey vet as in this play, when Wall gets beaten by Nash twice.
To be fair, Wall was playing Nash to force him baseline into help and didn't get much help from Chairman Yi Jianlian, but you better believe Wall learned something from the encounter.
"It's tough, you always have to keep yourself connected to him. With what a great player he is, he knows all the tricks of the trade to keep you on your heels and find his teammates and make shots for himself. There's a whole lot you can learn from him when we sit down and watch film," John Wall said after the game.
Despite having some early season health issues with a groin strain and a heel problem, Nash is averaging over 50 percent from the field, just like he's done for the past seven seasons. His scoring is up to 18.2 per game as in the 2005-07 period and his turnovers at 3.2 per game are as low as they've been since the 2003-04 season.
"I think (Nash is) feeling better and when he's feeling better I think he plays as well as any guard in the league. You have a game like he had (Sunday against the Wizards), I haven't seen a guard have a game like that," Alvin Gentry said about his point guard.
The Suns have cut back on Nash's practice time to help save his legs for games, but Steve still insists he's not yet back to full strength and, from the sounds of things, doesn't really want to be either.
"It's foolish to think I'm past it because I felt good (Sunday) night. Before (Sunday) night, I felt like I had a lot of work to do. It's important to have that train of thought that I have a lot of work to do and not cut corners," Nash said on Monday before boarding the team plane for another road trip.
Wall is going to be a great player, but like Tyreke Evans, Derrick Rose, Russell Westbrook and all the other great young point guards, he still has plenty to learn from the master ball handler.