- 1996–97 Phoenix Suns season
team = Phoenix Suns
misc = Suns draft Steve Nash
end_year = 1997
wins = 40
losses = 42
division = Pacific
division_place = 4
conf_place = 6
US Airways Center
playoffs = First round (eliminated 3–2)
bbr_team = PHO
NBA Draftwas the 54th draft in the National Basketball Association. It was held on June 26, 1996in East Rutherford, New Jersey. It is widely considered to be one of the deepest and most talented NBA Drafts in history, with over one-third of the first round picks later becoming NBA All-Stars. The draft contained three players currently lauded as future Hall of Famers in Kobe Bryant, Allen Iversonand Steve Nash. Other notable All-Stars include Marcus Camby, Ray Allen, Jermaine O'Neal, Shareef Abdur-Rahim, Antoine Walkerand Stephon Marbury.
Nash was selected 15th overall by the
Phoenix Sunsin the first round of the 1996 NBA Draft. Upon hearing the draft announcement, Suns fans booed in disapproval of the relatively unknown player. [McPeek, Jeramie, [http://www.nba.com/suns/news/fastbreak_nash_cover.html "The Canadian Kid"] , nba.com/suns, accessed July 24 2007.] Despite his impressive college accomplishments, he had not played in one of the major college conferences. During his first two seasons in the NBA, Nash played a supporting role behind NBA star point guards Jason Kiddand Kevin Johnson, and later, Sam Cassell. [http://www.jockbio.com/Bios/Nash/Nash_bio.html Steve Nash] , jockbio.com, accessed 14 September 2007.] In his rookie season, he only managed 10.5 minutes a game,Fact|date=May 2008 but in his sophomore season, his playing time increased significantly and he was even ranked 13th in the league for three point field goal percentage. Nevertheless, the Canadian's tenure with the Suns was not to last.
"Note: GP= Games played; MPG= Minutes per Game; SPG= Steals per Game; RPG = Rebounds per Game; APG. = Assists per Game; BPG = Blocks per Game; PPG = Points per Game"
* [http://www.databasebasketball.com/teams/teamyear.htm?yr=1996&tm=PHO&lg=N Suns on Database Basketball]
* [http://www.basketball-reference.com/teams/PHO/1997.html Suns on Basketball Reference]
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