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Steve Nash traded to rival Los Angeles Lakers

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There had been sign-and-trade talks with New York and a lucrative free agent offer from Toronto.

The deal will put Nash on the floor with the team he tried to unseat as a Western Conference power, teaming him with Kobe Bryant, Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol. That could be enough to lift the Lakers back into title contention.

The Suns at least get something for the loss of their longtime leader and one of the city's most popular athletes, although no one to help immediately, unless some or all of the picks are used in future trades.

Nash's Phoenix teammate Jared Dudley tweeted that Nash "has not only been the best but the most unselfish player I ever played with. I only wish him the best. He deserves everything. Steve Nash has made many players millions. Only fitting to trade to a team that has a chance to win the ship and pay what he deserves."

Nash has never made it to the NBA Finals. He was last in the Western Conference finals against the Lakers in 2010, when the Suns lost in six games and Los Angeles went on to win the NBA title.

The Suns drafted Nash in 1998, but traded him to Dallas after two seasons because Phoenix already had Kevin Johnson and Jason Kidd at the position. Nash played six seasons for Dallas, but bolted when owner Mark Cuban declined to spend big money to keep him. Then-Suns owner Jerry Colangelo brought a plane load of Phoenix players and officials to Dallas to woo Nash.

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