Steve Nash left the Phoenix Suns in a sign-and-trade deal with the Los Angeles Lakers last July, putting an end to his eight-year tenure in Arizona.
In return, Phoenix received four future draft picks — first rounders in 2013 and 2015 and second rounders in 2013 and 2014. The 39-year-old’s departure also opened up the the starting point guard spot for a familiar face — Goran Dragic — who agreed to a four-year, $34 million deal with the team shortly after. Dragic served as Nash’s understudy from 2008-10 as well as the second half of the 2010-11 season.
With a season’s worth of experience as starters for their respective clubs, it’s time to take a look at how their performances stack up side-by-side.
In 50 games with Lakers, Nash posted averages of 12.7 points, 6.7 assists and 2.8 rebounds per game, while only accruing 30 steals. He missed 32 games with hip, back and hamstring issues.
Conversely, Dragic missed only five games this year while playing his way to the most productive season of his five-year career. In 77 games, the Dragon averaged 14.7 points, 7.4 assists and 3.1 rebounds per game, while garnering 124 steals. The 26-year-old scored more than 20 points 15 times, whereas Nash did so only in five occasions.
Dragic also edged out Nash in playing time with an average of 33.5 minutes per game compared to Nash’s 32.5.
However, Dragic did not best Nash across the board. The 17-year veteran shot .497 from the field, .922 from the stripe and .438 from long-range, while his replacement in Phoenix went .443 from the floor, .748 from the free-throw line and .319 from behind the three-point line.
With an injury-riddled season, Nash failed to meet the hype while his counterpart with the Suns exceeded expectations.
However, Dragic is sitting at home while Nash prepares his body for a a first-round matchup against the San Antonio Spurs.