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AP: eb5b7075-49bf-435e-a86d-a6fbac742e4e
Phoenix Suns guard Steve Nash, left, drives past Minnesota Timberwolves guard Luke Ridnour in the fourth quarter during an NBA basketball game on Monday, March 12, 2012, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)
By the time this season is done with, Steve Nash will have played the last eight years of his career with the Phoenix Suns.

A great player and ambassador for each one of those eight years, the Suns have had no interest in trading the veteran, even with his contract set to expire this summer.

That has surprised many around the NBA, as there are people who feel it would be best for the team to trade its star rather than hold onto him, hope to be one of the Western Conference's final playoff teams, and then possibly lose him as a free agent.

However, Suns President of Basketball Operations Lon Babby is not one of those people.

"I'm proud of the stance that we've taken and I'm proud of the stance that Steve has taken, and I think together we've been good partners in this," Babby told Arizona Sports 620's Doug and Wolf. "I hope the community feels that way."

Babby was pleased that there has been no "circus" around the Nash rumors and, without naming names, was likely alluding to the Dwight Howard situation in Orlando, where the player is practically holding the team hostage.

That's absolutely not the case in Phoenix, where the Suns are not only avoiding the pitfalls that come with trade rumors, but actually turning their season around with the help of the future Hall of Fame point guard.

"I'm proud of that, and I think people around the league understand it and hopefully respect it," Babby said of the decision to stick with Nash. "They may not agree with it, but everybody's got to make their own decisions."

But the Suns' decision to hold onto Nash will lead them vulnerable to whatever decision the point guard makes in the offseason, when he will have the chance to sign with any team he chooses.

The Suns have mentioned a desire to keep the 38-year-old past this season, but there's no telling if the feelings are mutual.

And when asked about confidence in re-signing the two-time MVP, Babby said free agency will be a different process compared to if Nash was traded.

"He's a smart guy, he's a good business person, he's well represented, he's going to do his due diligence and there's going to be a process, I'm sure," he said. "It's just way too early to predict where that process is going to take us."

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