Two-time MVP of the National Basketball Association, SMUS alumnus Steve Nash was at the school today to speak to us all, Grade 5 to 12, and staff, and some friends of the school. Steve is now 35, and has just signed a three-year extension to his contract with the Phoenix Suns. The only intimation that he might be approaching the twilight of his career occurred when asked about the “Steve Nash diet”, which is featured on the Suns website. “Basically, it’s simply eating natural food. Fresh fruit, fresh vegetables, fresh juice, chicken, fish, some brown rice – if I had kept eating the food I was eating ten years ago I don’t think I would still be able to keep up.” But as things stand –and as a spectator can see when watching him play – he still has a number of years left.
It is inspiring to have an example like Steve Nash, especially one who has such meaning and such a connection to our students. He truly was inspiring this morning. He spoke, he answered questions. Yes, most definitely, he said: play a variety of sports, don’t simply specialize in one sport, if you want to learn to be a creative athlete with a sense of different situations and a sense of team. Yes, do get involved in everything at school, treat each day as a menu of possibilities to be devoured. Yes, he said, do be guided by and do respect your teachers and parents; they care about you and they know what they are talking about.
Steve is a whole person, a fact that is very clear from the way he speaks and from the choices he makes in life. A great athlete, he also conveys an understanding of what it means to be principled, to think independently, and to want to leave the world a better place than he found it. His Foundation works very hard throughout the world, always on the lookout for projects especially that are going to give kids chances to grow and fulfill themselves that they would never have otherwise. He is modest, understated, and balanced; because of these virtues he is eloquent beyond the power of the straightforward and clear language which he uses to express himself. We are fortunate to have such a role model, who restores meaning to that particular phrase. If we were searching for someone who lived up to our School’s Vision, we couldn’t choose better – to learn, to lead, to serve. Thanks, Steve.