Stephen John Nash, OC, OBC, a professional basketball coach and former player from Canada, was born on February 7, 1974. He was an eight-time All-Star and a seven-time All-NBA selection during his 18 seasons of NBA play. While playing for the Phoenix Suns, Nash won the NBA Most Valuable Player award twice.
Nash received a scholarship to Santa Clara University in California following a prosperous high school basketball career in British Columbia. He was twice voted the West Coast Conference (WCC) Player of the Year during his four seasons with the Broncos, during which time the club made three NCAA tournament appearances. Nash was selected by the Phoenix Suns with the 15th overall choice in the 1996 NBA Draft after graduating from Santa Clara as the school’s all-time leader in assists. In 1998, he was traded to the Dallas Mavericks after making little of an impression. He was elected to his first NBA All-Star Game and received his first All-NBA selection before the end of his fourth season with the Mavericks. Nash steered the Mavericks to the Western Conference finals together with Dirk Nowitzki and Michael Finley.
Nash was selected the league’s MVP in the 2004–05 season after leading the Suns to the Western Conference Finals. He received the MVP award once more in the 2005–06 campaign, then Nowitzki won the award for a third straight year in 2006–07. He is recognized as one of the all-time best point guards.  At various stages in his career, Nash led the NBA in both assists and free throw percentage. In addition, he is regarded as one of the best players in NBA league history in terms of overall assists, assists per game, three-point shooting, and free throw shooting.
Nash has received recognition for his support of numerous charitable projects. He was ranked among the top 100 most important individuals in the world by Time in 2006. In addition to being given an honorary doctor of laws from the University of Victoria in 2008, Nash was appointed to the Order of Canada in 2007 and invested into the order in 2016. Since the Vancouver Whitecaps FC joined Major League Soccer (MLS) in 2011, Nash has shared ownership of the team. He played basketball for the Canadian men’s national team from 1991 to 2003, where he was twice voted FIBA AmeriCup MVP and had one Olympic appearance. From 2012 to 2019, he was the club’s general manager.
On February 7, 1974, Nash was born in Johannesburg, South Africa, to Welsh mother Jean and English father John. When he was 18 months old, his family relocated to Regina, Saskatchewan, before settling in Victoria, British Columbia. He is consequently a citizen of both Canada and Great Britain. His father played professional soccer all over the world before moving the family to Canada. With his younger brother Martin, Nash enjoyed playing ice hockey and soccer quite a bit. He didn’t begin playing basketball until he was 12 or 13 years old. However, he assured his mother that he would play in the NBA and become a star when he was in grade eight. Future NHL stars Russ and Geoff Courtnall, who lived next door to him,
Nash had previously attended Mount Douglas Secondary School in Saanich, British Columbia, but his parents chose to transfer him to St. Michaels University School, a luxury boarding school in Victoria, after his academic performance started to deteriorate. He played in the NBA, soccer, and rugby union there. Nash had a career-high scoring, assist, and rebounding averages of 21.3, 11.2 and 9.1, respectively, for the basketball team in his senior year. He was selected the province’s Player of the Year in 1991–1992, the year he captained his team to the British Columbia AAA provincial championship victory.
In the first round of the 1996 NBA draft, the Phoenix Suns selected Nash 15th overall after he earned a degree in sociology. Suns supporters booed the unproven athlete after learning of the draft announcement. This was due to the fact that Nash had not participated in one of the top collegiate conferences despite his great academic credentials. Donnie Nelson, the assistant coach who mentored Nash in high school under the guidance of Nelson’s friend Ken Shields, had a significant impact on Phoenix’s decision. Nelson later became friends with Nash while the player was playing for Santa Clara. Nash supported NBA superstar point guards Kevin Johnson, Sam Cassell, and then Jason Kidd during his first two NBA seasons.
Nash only played 10.5 minutes a game during his rookie season, but in his second season, he saw a significant rise in playing time and even reached the 13th spot in the league for three-point field goal %. However, the Canadian’s time with the Suns was short-lived. Nelson persuaded his father, Don Nelson, who was serving as the Dallas Mavericks’ assistant general manager at the time, to acquire the underutilized Nash. Nash was moved from the Suns to the Mavericks after the 1998 NBA Draft in exchange for Pat Garrity’s selection rights, Martin Müürsepp, Bubba Wells, and a first-round draft pick (who later turned out to be future Phoenix teammate Shawn Marion).