In what could be the final game with the Phoenix Suns for point guard Steve Nash, he was given an ovation that few other athletes here in Arizona have experienced. After minutes of what was almost a universal shouting of "We want Steve!" so he could be put back in to the game in the fourth quarter, there was a scenario that could have been the perfect ending to Nash's career here, should it end up being the end of his time with the Suns.
He had already reentered the game and pulled so that he could get one final ovation, but with about 22 seconds left in the game and possession of the ball, the Suns trailed by two points. Phoenix called a timeout and drew up a play.
What should have occurred is that Nash should have come in to the game and taken a final three-point shot to win the game.
That didn't happen.
He should have been subbed in, taken the inbound pass, run a play that ended up with his having the ball behind the arc and taking the final shot as time expired to win the game that meant nothing really.
Instead of that storybook ending, we got an errant three-pointer by Sebastian Telfair, followed by an offensive rebound by Ronnie Price, which he turned into a flailing, twisting, backwards toss of the ball in the air and a four-point loss.
The fans were robbed that potentially magical moment.
But perhaps it was better this way. That sort of ending would only be remembered if he were not to come back to Phoenix.
Instead, without the fairy tale end, the door is much more open for his return. I think fans really want that. After all, they did shout "We want Steve!" until he came into the game.
So, maybe we should instead be happy that it did not end that way. That can be saved for his final game in three years and he is retiring.
Until then -- We want Steve!
Coach Alvin Gentry addressed the possibility the hero shot by Steve:
"No, I wasn't going to put him in. He wasn't warmed up and we were in a situation where we can see if some other guys can do some things. There's a lot of decisions that have to be made here and I thought that was a situation where we could stick somebody else in and see if they could make the play or see if we could execute. He's not going to be able to be here forever, even if he decides to come back, so at some stage somebody's going to have to make a play and I just thought tonight was an opportunity for some guys to have a chance to try and execute and run some plays and take some shots at the end of the game."
In reality, it was just a pipe dream. It would have been cool. But it wasn't something that was ever going to happen. It just didn't make sense, especially in a meaningless game.
But how great would that have been? It would have been a very memorable moment for fans for a long time.
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