Suns' Nash inks $22M extension

Victoria's Steve Nash signed a two-year, $22-million US contract extension with the Phoenix Suns on Monday.

Victoria's Steve Nash will remain Phoenix's favourite Sun for at least three more years.

Nash, 35, signed a two-year, $22-million US contract extension with the Phoenix Suns on Monday, committing him to the franchise through the 2011-12 campaign.

He still has one season at $13 million US remaining on the five-year, $65-million US contract he signed July 14, 2004. 

"There is definitely a good chance that this is the last three years for me," Nash said. "It would obviously be a pleasure and a bonus to finish my career as a Sun."

Nash agreed to defer $6 million US, meaning he will receive $3 million US in each of the two years following the expiration of the extension.

"I wanted to do the best I could for this franchise," he said.

Nash, named the NBA's most valuable player in 2004–05 and 2005-06, told reporters that he toyed with the notion of signing elsewhere to try to win the league championship that has eluded him.

But in the end, he preferred to stay put in Phoenix.

"I definitely was weighing all my options," Nash said. "I definitely looked out there to see what possibilities there were — becoming a free agent next year, asking to be traded.

"But the truth is, I love the city, the organization. I really like my teammates and coach."

'One of the best point guards in the NBA'

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Summer In The City   

"I get stopped about 50 times a day on the street in New York: 'Are you coming to the Knicks?'" — Nash on living in New York in the off-season 

Considering how Nash has improved with age, the feeling would appear to be mutual.

The veteran point guard has averaged 17.1 points and 10.8 assists the past five seasons with Phoenix — higher than his career averages of 14.4 points and 8.0 assists.

"Steve is still one of the best point guards in the NBA, and his dedication to conditioning will keep him among the league's elite for several more seasons," Suns general manager Steve Kerr said. "In many ways, he embodies what our franchise is all about, and we're thrilled that he will be the leader of our team for the next three years."

Nash was drafted 15th overall by Phoenix in 1996, and spent two seasons with the Suns before being shipped to the Dallas Mavericks for Martin Muursepp, Bubba Wells, Pat Garrity and a first-round draft pick on June 24, 1998.

He rejoined the Suns as an unrestricted free agent.

With files from The Associated Press