2000 Canadian Sport Awards
ALSO ON SLAM!
Steve Nash - Basketball
Nominated by Canada BasketballSteve Nash joined Canada's basketball program in 1991 when he was named an alternate with the national junior team. In 1993 he moved to the senior ranks at the world qualification tournament. Three years later, he was drafted fifteenth overall by the Phoenix Suns of the National Basketball League and currently plays for the Dallas Mavericks.
Last season, a back injury kept Nash out of the lineup for the final 10 games. With the all-important Olympic qualification tournament coming up, the strongly patriotic Nash overcame the injury and, demonstrating gritty leadership, led the Canadian team as they secured a spot at Sydney.
When not starring on the basketball court, Nash gives freely of his time and energy on behalf of youth. He was a featured speaker at the Nike All-Canada Camp in Toronto. Speaking to 80 of the most talented high-school basketball players from across Canada, he shared his experiences and patiently answered every question. He is also the spokesperson for Future Hoops, a Canada Basketball initiative to encourage Canadians to participate at all levels of basketball.
Nash, who comes from Victoria, is a strong supporter of the Big Brothers and Big Sisters program. Despite his busy NBA schedule, he has a little brother in Dallas; in fact, he has had a little brother in every city in which he has lived. He financially supports a number of important causes, including the rebuilding of a dilapidated basketball court in Dallas and the establishment of a scholarship at his alma mater, Santa Clara University.
To Nash's delight, his brother Martin, a player with Canada's national soccer team, recently played a pivotal role in Canada's upset 2-1 victory over Mexico in Gold Cup play. The younger Nash, a 70th-minute substitute, set up both of Canada's goals.
Steve Nash is an exceptional athlete, who acknowledges his good fortune in being able to earn a living doing what he loves - playing basketball. Despite his success in the NBA, his dream is the same as that of all Canadian athletes - to represent Canada at the Olympic Games. Thanks to his leadership on and off the court, that dream is about to become reality.