Nash-ional squad option open

STEVE BUFFERY -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 9:04 AM ET

Steve Nash has not totally ruled out competing for Canada in the future. Despite his disappointment over Jay Triano being let go as the national basketball team's head coach last year, and the difficulty finding time to prepare and compete in international play, the Victoria, B.C., native told The Toronto Sun this week that he will keep his options open.

"It's certainly not a never," said Nash, the Phoenix Suns' star point guard. "But I will be 31 next week and I have played in the program for over a decade, I have two little girls now and I'm playing a lot of minutes and a lot of games in the NBA, so it's difficult.

"There are too many miles in these legs, so it would have to be a special circumstance that would cause me to go."

How about the first Olympics ever in China, the 2008 Beijing Games?

Nash wouldn't say, but it's a sure bet that he would play only if he approved of the new head coach Canada Basketball is expected to hire in the next week or two.

Having fellow NBA star Jamaal Magloire finally make a commitment to play for his country could also be a factor.

Nash has led the national team to some of its biggest triumphs, including a 5-2 record at the 2000 Sydney Olympics.

"I love the program and have incredible memories," he said. "The Olympics was the highlight of my sporting career, so I'll be tied to the program hopefully forever and I care about it.

"I wish I had the energy and the time to play every year. And I wish our summer was eight months and I could fit in a month, but it's not."


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