Underneath his inviting personality optimistic outlook and relentless drive to stay healthy Steve Nash has continually faced this preseason an uncomfortable reality.

No matter how many practices he misses and treatment he receives the 39-year-old guard has faced what he calls a “day-to-day” struggle in ensuring he stays ahead of Father Time.

Nash participated all but the end of Thursday’s practice because of a neck Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni described as “stiff.” Nash called his sore left ankle “good enough.” Meanwhile it’s possible Nash will sit out of the Lakers’ preseason finale Friday against the Utah Jazz at Honda Center to ensure his back and hamstrings also stay healthy injuries he spent all offseason rehabbing.

“Age ultimately wins all battles but at the same time I’m not going to concede everything” Nash said. “I feel like I can do everything I’ve always done. It’s just a matter of if I have my body in a place where I can do it consistently and recover and be able to find that health to execute.”