Goran had a nice line of 16 points, 8 assists and 5 rebounds (and 1 steal) to help Slovenia beat Tunisia by 24. He was clearly the best player on the court.
ESPN3 is carrying live streaming of every FIBA game in the next 2 weeks. Had a good time watching this game LIVE this morning.
Slovenia next plays the US on Sunday morning on national/cable TV at 6:30am.
Nash and Gentry share a shake at the Mercury playoff game on Thursday. (Photo by Ryan Malone, SB Nation Arizona)
I stuck my head in the practice court where Nash was getting some shots up yesterday and shared a wave and saw The Most Interesting Canadian In The World at the Mercury playoff game where he was sitting courtside with his twin daughters, his brother Martin (the pro soccer player) and a niece.
Nash on Kerr leaving:
"He did a phenomenal job for us. I miss him already.
"He has such a wealth of experience as far as being a part of winning teams that he did a great job of building a team of guys who can co-exist and get more out of each other because of their personalities. He didn't want selfish guys. He didn't want guys in here who wouldn't work. So we have a locker room of character guys because of him. Our locker room was the best it's ever been last year because of the decisions he made."
So basically, Steve said all the nice things about Steve but of course wasn't really going to comment about what Steve thinks about why Steve left.
Nash on the Suns offer to Amare:
"It disappointed me because we were close and we're going to miss a big piece, but I think Robert went to or beyond where anybody could ask him to go," Nash said. "This franchise would suffer a severe risk if Amar'e ever got hurt, so I understand why the last two years were guaranteed only if he played 22 minutes a game. I can't fault Robert for that. I can't blame Amar'e. He got that money guaranteed. It's just a shame."
That's pretty much what everyone else said which just goes to prove how smart Steve Nash is. He agreed with all of us.
Nash on the Suns being undersized:
"To try to spread those guys between the two (off-guard) and four (power forward) at times, which may or may not work, it'll be a challenge," Nash said. "But the positive side is they're all terrific players. We have a wealth of depth at that position, defensively and with skill and shooting. The toughness and athleticism will serve those guys well but you can't expect them to play a ton of four and to thrive."
Again, Nash saying what we've been talking about since the night the Suns added Hedo. Who's going to play the four? How are they going to rebound and defend the paint?
The problem, which Gentry touched on during Blanks press conference, is that there just aren't many good options out there. I've gone through the rosters and names it's the same thing, either guys who wouldn't really help or guys that teams aren't going to be willing to give up.
And course, you can't add a power forward or back up center without trading away some one on the team. This was the
fatal flaw questionable move in trading for Hedo and not trying to turn Barbosa into more of a power player like Brandon Bass or Ronny Turiaf.
We'll see what happens next. There's no question the team recognizes this issue with their roster and now it's up to new man Lance Blanks to figure out if he can make a reasonable deal. Barring that, the Suns will play small again and just have to hope that Robin Lopez can give them a very productive and healthy season.
Then again, this team thrives on being the underdog so don't be surprised to keep hearing Nash talk about the challenges they face. They love to use that stuff as a motivator.