Lloyd Pierce pens Steve Nash tribute, ‘A white guy from Canada with swag’
Lloyd Pierce was once a college hopeful, recruited by Santa Clara University, a prestigious Jesuit school that had soon-to-be Hall of Famer Steve Nash as its star player.
The now coach of the Atlanta Hawks recalls just how “Nashty” rewrote everything he thought he knew about basketball in two years of school together. Pierce was heavily recruited by schools in the West Coast Conference, but it was Nash’s willingness to go with the flow and get to know Pierce that ultimately swayed his decision to commit.
The 42-year-old recalls how Nash was different from every other “white guy” he had met.
‘Now, I’m defending this dude from Canada with the flattop every day in practice. And his crossover game is nice! He shot 3s off the dribble effortlessly, threw the best lobs and had more swag than any player I’ve ever played with. And he backed it up,” said Pierce, according to Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated. “Something was just unreal about him. This guy is from British Columbia? Really? And he likes Nas’ new album, Illmatic?”
“I had never known a white guy from Canada with swag and mad hoop skills, and who was into hip-hop … until I met Stephen Nash!”
Nash would go on to the talent-filled 1996 NBA Draft after his senior season at Santa Clara after two West Coast Conference Player of the Year awards, selected by the Phoenix Suns with the 15th overall pick.
Now only a day away from his induction in the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame, Nash will have his former teammate watching attentively before he is enshrined as one of the best in basketball royalty.