Amar’e Stoudemire and Steve Nash Reunite in Brooklyn Bench

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  • Amar’e Stoudemire has agreed to join Steve Nash’s coaching team in Brooklyn.
  • Stoudemire and Nash were teammates in Phoenix.
  • The Nets are tied for second in the odds board to win the NBA’s Eastern Conference next season at +425.

Former NBA All-star Amar’e Stoudemire has agreed to join Steve Nash’s coaching staff in Brooklyn.

Nash was hired by the Nets earlier this month in what will be his first coaching gig in the NBA. Likewise, Stoudemire has never worked as an assistant in the NBA or at any level. In fact, he played in the 2020 Israeli League for Maccabi Tel Aviv, winning Finals MVP honors in the process.

One of the Best Power Forwards

The 37-year old Stoudemire was one of the best power forwards during the 2000s decade. He was known for his athleticism and penchant to play above the rim. He played for the Phoenix Suns, New York Knicks, and Miami Heat in the NBA. It was in Phoenix where he formed a successful partnership with Nash.

Stoudemire joins former interim Nets head coach Jacque Vaught as Nash’s deputies on the Brooklyn bench. Assistant coach Adam Harrington is also expected to remain on the Nets bench in the Nash regime. There are even rumors floating around that former Rockets head coach Mike D’Antoni is also being eyed to help Nash’s staff.

The Brooklyn Nets are tied with the Boston Celtics for second in the current oddsboard to win the Eastern Conference at +425 and fifth at to win the 2021 NBA title at +1100. Last year’s best regular season team, the Milwaukee Bucks, are the odds on favorite to win the East and the defending champions Lakers are the betting favorites to repeat as champions. But with Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving set to return next season, the Nets are expected to be among the top teams in the league.

Pick and Roll Game With Nash

During the 2004-05 season, Stoudemire joined forces with Nash, who signed with the Suns as a free agent to lead the team to a 62-20 record. Stoudemire averaged 26 points that season and earned his first All-Star game appearance. They reached the Western Conference Finals with Stoudemire averaging 37 points per game but the Suns still lost in five games to the San Antonio Spurs.

Despite dealing with several injuries and numerous playoff failures, Stoudemire ended his stint in Phoenix fourth in franchise history in scoring average (21.4 points per game) third in rebounds, free throws made and attempted, and fifth in blocked shots. Stoudemire also set single game records for consecutive free throws in one game (20), and blocked shots (20).

Nash and Stoudemire ran a pick and roll game that was likened to the Stockton-Malone tandem in the 80s and 90s. The two of them overlapped for six seasons where the Suns ran a trailblazing offense that became a topic of a Jack McCallum book called “Seven Second or Less”, referring to their run and gun offense ran under Mike D’Antoni. Nash won MVP honors in 2005 and 2006.

Decorated NBA Career

Stoudemire had a decorated NBA career. He was the 2002-03 NBA Rookie of the Year, a six-time All-Star, and five-time All-NBA team selection. Stoudemire played in a total of 14 NBA seasons and had a career average of 18.9 points, 7.8 rebounds, 1.2 assists, and 1.2 blocks per game. He last played during the NBA’s 2015-16 season when he appeared in 52 games for the Miami Heat. He was later signed by the Knicks, a team he played 4 ½ seasons for, in a ceremonial gesture.

While playing for New York, Stoudemire averaged 17.3 points and 6.7 rebounds to help the Knicks win the 2012 Atlantic Division title. During the 2009-10 season, he broke a 48-year old Knicks record for most consecutive 30 points game with 9. Since leaving the NBA, he has appeared in the CBA and in the Israeli League.

Stoudemire co-owns the Hapoel Jerusalem team in Israel and led the team to the 2016 Israeli Basketball Cup and the 2017 Israeli League championship. Stoudemire also played two seasons in the Big 3 league team Tri-State. Late last year, he played for the Fujian Sturgeons of the Chinese Basketball Association. Stoudemire then returned for a third stint in Israel last January and helped Maccabi Tel Aviv win the Israeli title while winning Finals MVP in the process.

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