Steve Nash said that money will be a “very important” factor in where he signs as a free agent this offseason. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Steve Nash won’t be signing a cheap deal as a free agent this offseason.
On ESPN Radio Monday, Nash said he was “open to everything,” but that money would still be a “very important” factor in where he signs what could be his final NBA contract this offseason, the New York Post reports.
Nash’s sentiment would seem to rule out him signing with the New York Knicks, Miami Heat or Chicago Bulls. He would have to take a major paycut at each of those places, even though all have expressed interest in signing the free-agent point guard.
The Post’s Marc Berman reported that Nash was asked the quintessential question of almost every player in every sport that hits the free-agent market: Is money or winning a championship more important to where you sign? Nash, at least, was honest.
“I definitely feel I want to be validated monetarily to an extent,’’ Nash said. “It’s still very important. I think money in many ways represents respect. For example, if you sign with a team and take half or less money, six months later they trade you. It has to be one of the factors. It’s not everything but it is important and will be one of the factors involved.’’
Other teams reportedly interested in Nash are the Toronto Raptors, Portland Trail Blazers and Brooklyn Nets. The Phoenix Suns are also looking to keep their star point guard in Arizona. All four of those teams have the salary-cap space to make Nash a decent offer.
On ESPN Radio in New York, Nash was asked specifically about the possibility of playing for the Knicks. He wouldn’t rule out anything, but he suggested the idea of signing purely on the perceived chance of winning a championship wouldn’t be the only factor when he hits the open market on July 1 — or even the most important one.
“It’s nice to have that idea, I want to win a championship,’’ Nash said, according to the Post. “That’s also difficult. You can turn down a ton of money for a team you think can win a championship and there’s an injury and the chemistry isn’t right and you’re traded in six months. I have to put all the things into the hat.’’