Steve Nash Interview
The San Antonio Spurs have taken a commanding 3-0 lead in their Western Conference finals series with the Phoenix Suns. To avoid being eliminated, Phoenix must win four straight games. Odds are against them in a big way. Here's what Suns point guard and 2004-05 NBA league MVP Steve Nash had to say right after Game 3:
Q. Do you guys think you got demoralized in this game and in the series in general?
STEVE NASH: I thought there was a stretch in the second quarter we weren't on the same page and couldn't get any momentum, couldn't get any plays to stop their run. Kind of put our heads down. We just can't do that. We have proven in stretches that we can play with these guys. For us to put our heads down just made it impossible for us to come back no matter how well we played in the second half.
Q. The fourth quarter push, do you think you guys got going at that point? What was the trouble in sustaining that?
STEVE NASH: I think Amare (Stoudemire) was playing great offensively, but I think the key was just desperation, I think we lost site of that in the second quarter that, you know, we're in a deep hole and there's not really much for us to lose at this point. We just need to keep going play with that desperation, and I think the fourth quarter we showed that and we got back in the game more or less, but the hole was a little bit insurmountable for that stretch where we didn't play with that desperation in the second quarter.
Q. You talked earlier about not knowing how much better you can play with Joe (Johnson) out there. Talk about how his presence affected you.
STEVE NASH: I thought it was great. I actually was really proud of Joe for playing and very thankful of him for being out there and he played well, I don't think it had a negative effect on us at all. I thought, you know, I didn't play as well as I have. I missed some shots I should have made and turned the ball over a few too many times. That had nothing to do with Joe being out there. I need to play a little bit better. When Joe gets his legs back - hopefully there will be lots of time in this series for him to do that - but he played extremely well considering the circumstances.
Q. Does it feel like the Spurs have beaten you at your own game?
STEVE NASH: We really have a tough time stopping them. Tim (Duncan) just puts so much pressure on our defense in every situation just by being on the court everyone is leaning towards him. The other players are terrific players too and when you are constantly leaning towards Tim, the other guys are too good for that, and you know, but if you don't lean towards him, he can destroy a team. That's why they are a team that's won two championships and that's why we are down 3-0 is we can't -- we haven't had an answer to stop them yet.
Q. Coach said he expects everyone to come play hard in Game 4 as always.
STEVE NASH: Yeah, we will come and play hard. I feel good about that. We got guys who want to compete and play hard. We got a stretch tonight where we didn't play as hard as we need to. I think that was a great lesson for us tonight. Everyone felt really bad for themselves at halftime. We had a better effort in the second half. So I think lesson learned, we will play a lot harder on Monday.