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Lakers' Nash optimistic he'll play Sunday

The SportsXchange

Los Angeles Lakers guard Steve Nash participated in practice on Friday, and he's hoping he can play in the Lakers' playoff opener against San Antonio on Sunday, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Friday was the first time he practiced since March 30. He has been sidelined with hip and hamstring soreness.

"Mentally, I'm chomping at the bit. Physically, I'm getting there," Nash said, according to the Times. "I'm very optimistic that I'll play on Sunday. I just don't want to over-promise and get ahead of myself."

Although he is not pain-free, Nash said he is "less inhibited."

"I couldn't sprint," he said of his recent absence. "There was too much inhibition from the nerve. It was just shutting me down whenever I tried to cover some ground. That's why I couldn't play the last few weeks, it's hard to play an NBA game if you can't change ends of the floor."

Coach Mike D'Antoni said Friday that Nash would be a game-time decision on Sunday. D'Antoni also said he might start Steve Blake alongside Nash in the backcourt.
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