Steve Nash believes that Dwight Howard could be a truly great defender even today if the Lakers big man locks in and has that mentality.
Steve Nash and Dwight Howard were famously teammates on a Lakers team that floundered throughout the year, much like this year’s iteration. D-12 left Los Angeles the following year as a free agent, signing with the Houston Rockets.
While Nash and Dwight didn’t have a particularly great relationship – Dwight wanted to post up while Nash wanted to use him more in the pick-and-roll – they have since resolved their on-court differences off it.
Never forget the one time Steve Nash ever yelled at a teammate. And of course it was Dwight Howard. pic.twitter.com/3xu5KYlsia
— Mike Vigil (@protectedpick) September 3, 2020
Steve Nash comments on how Dwight Howard could have maximized his defensive potential
Steve Nash was a guest on the Road Trippin Podcast recently. The first topic of conversation during this interview was how Dwight Howard currently fits with the Lakers.
As an opposing coach, Nash has obviously scouted Howard’s current playing style. In his mind, Howard has the ability to still lock in and defend at a high level. That’s exactly what he said in response to Channing and Richard Jefferson’s light-hearded takes:
“I’m not gonna say I’m shocked, but I’m surprised (by his resurgence) you know. Like he’s had such an up-and-down physical kind of road the last many years, since his back surgery.”
“If he moves well, that guy can really defend the basket. Like when he’s locked in and wants to. Sometimes I think, when he wasn’t physically at his best, and he also wanted to prove ‘I’m a 20-a-game post player’. You’ve got all these other things you’re trying to accomplish.”
“It took away a little bit from him being like ‘OK, I’m shutting down this area of the court!’. Which he can do like very few people I’ve ever seen.”
The Lakers haven’t seen Dwight’s best form even in his backup role this season. They will be hoping for a final playoff push from the 3-time Defensive Player of the Year.