When asked exactly how his team will play now that he’s the Nets’ new coach, Steve Nash evaded the question like he used to slither through the paint.
But after having already admitted he wished his ahead-of-their-time Phoenix Suns had leaned even more into their frenetic Seven Seconds or Less pace, it stands to reason it won’t be slow.
Six seconds or less?
“Stylistically, it’s to be determined. Obviously one of the most important things is to start on the defensive end, be strong in defensive transition and in the half-court,” Nash said Wednesday via Zoom. “And on offense, for our team we have a talented group, we definitely want to use the talent, speed, athleticism, versatility of our players that’re able to make plays for each other.
“The skill is profound in our roster, and we want to put them in a position where they can express themselves and in a way where they can be very difficult to cover, make teams make a lot of decisions and potentially a lot of mistakes and make them difficult to guard. That’s still a work in progress.”
As is Nash’s staff.
Considering Adam Harrington’s personal ties — he’s Kevin Durant’s longtime shooting coach and introduced the star to Nash eight years ago — he seems like a good bet to return. And after Jacque Vaughn was passed over despite going 7-3 as the interim coach, Nets GM Sean Marks retained him as the lead assistant.
“That’s never an easy discussion. It’s never easy to tell somebody that, ‘Hey, look, you came out second in this regard.’ But it’s a credit to JV as a man and who he is and wanting to continue to stay here and be a part of something and continue to build,” Marks said. “He knows what’s at stake here, and he also knows he’s valued by Steve, and Steve and JV have had multiple conversations.”
Vaughn is valued as the highest-paid assistant in the NBA ostensibly. The last word is key, with ESPN reporting that Indiana requested permission to talk to him about its head coaching vacancy.
“He’s an incredibly high-character individual, extremely hard-working, extremely prepared,” Nash said. “He’s an all-around top human being.
“But also what he’s done for this organization, the work he’s put in, the building he’s done from a cultural and basketball standpoint, the inside knowledge here is invaluable to continue. … I couldn’t think of a better person to have alongside me to work with, to learn from, collaborate with. So I feel very fortunate he’d remain and be willing to be a part of this.”
Garrett Temple and fiancé Kara McCullough became parents. … Free agent Wilson Chandler has signed with the Zhejiang Guangsha Lions, according to reports in China and Europe.