For nearly two decades, Bryant has set the tone for the Lakers. They have revolved around him, and he has evolved around them. Every player who has played alongside him has been influenced by his gravitational pull. Those who can exist and thrive within his orbit stay. Those who can't are cast out into outer space, or Houston, as it were.
But Nash hasn't been Nash for a long while now. Not since the second game of last season, when the Portland Trail Blazers' Damian Lilliard crashed into his leg and set off a devastating chain reaction through Nash's body that's robbed him of his explosion, stamina and athleticism.That's the player D'Antoni was counting on to help spread his word and make them all true believers in his systems. Nobody delivered a sermon on the court like Nash.