PHOENIX (AP) — Lon Babby had been preparing for the day when Steve Nash would no longer be with the Phoenix Suns.
Knowing it was coming didn't make it any easier for the Suns' president of basketball operations.
Calling the decision to part with Nash "excruciating," Babby says Wednesday that last week's sign-and-trade deal with the rival Los Angeles Lakers was a necessary move for the Suns to transition into a younger and more athletic team.
Babby says the team met with Nash on four occasions after the season, but it became apparent the team couldn't accommodate what the two-time league MVP needed and still have money left to rebuild.
Nash was introduced by the Lakers early in the day after being traded for four draft picks.