We’re not trying to cast dispersions, but through the years New York Daily News NBA columnist Mitch Lawrence has lobbed several significant rumors around print and the web, rumors that were immediately shot down by the players in question. Now, there’s always the idea that these defensive players might be protesting a bit too much, but it’s worth bringing up both sides, here.

On Sunday, Lawrence made a point to discuss the future of Los Angeles Lakers point man Steve Nash, who has missed 78 regular and postseason games over the last two years with various leg and nerve injuries:

Steve Nash finally made it back to the Lakers and has told a few friends this is going to be it, even though he has one season to go on his contract, at $9.7 million. Nash, who turned 40 Friday, doesn’t expect to help much, but that’s been the story of his injury-plagued Laker career. He really missed the camaraderie with his teammates when he was out for three months with a nerve injury in his back, and says he wants to experience that for at least the last part of this season before he calls it a career.

On Monday, Nash downplayed the “few friends” rumor:

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