I don’t like Steve Nash because he’s short (like me) or because he’s white (also like me), and I don’t like him because he’s a Canadian (unlike me, although it certainly adds to his bio as an NBA player that he is short, white AND Canadian). I don’t even like Steve Nash because he’s one of the most talented and entertaining basketball players in the world. I think what I like most about him is that he plays the game of basketball the way I always dreamed of playing, so watching him is like seeing my childhood hoop dreams come to life. It’s also really refreshing to listen to an athlete give great interviews without coming off as – here comes a Tom Cruise word – “glib”, but that’s just Steve Nash’s style – he’s a very real and cool dude (for a great example, watch Nash on Charlie Rose). Nash was hardly recruited coming out of high school (he went to college at Santa Clare University, a small div. I school in California), yet he somehow overcame all his apparent “disadvantages” (short, white, Canadian) to become a two-time MVP in the NBA…not the NHL. Add to this all the great things he has done to help children around the world and it turns out he’s not only a great basketball player, but a great human being. He put together a basketball game to raise money for kids in China this past summer with the help of Chinese basketball legend Yao Ming, and they convinced several other NBA players (including Carmelo Anthony and Baron Davis) to go along and support the cause. The Steve Nash Foundation supports organizations throughout the world to help grow healthy kids; from families of adoption in Steve’s native British Columbia to raising awareness to keep the children of civil war in Uganda safe. Steve’s foundation is also involved with environmental issues and efforts to help situations of poverty, and because he knows he can’t do it all on his own, he invites others to partner with his foundation through an initiative called the “10 Assist Challenge” (for you non-basketball fans, 10 assists is a basketball statistic reference). The greatest part is that Nash doesn’t seem to be doing any of this to be a good role model or to make a name for himself in the media; he really just seems to understand that his position of influence allows him the opportunity to help others, so that’s what he’s trying to do. He has been a lot more visible lately – doing interviews, magazine ads and a few commercials. The New York Times sports magazine PLAY had a great article on Nash a few weeks ago. The writer of the article spent some time hanging out with Nash in NYC where Steve has lived the past few summers, and where this past summer he was spotted riding a long-board around town and playing pickup basketball and soccer with locals…seriously, how cool is this guy?