Gilbert Arenas had 22 points on 21 shot attempts and wasn't able to lead his team to a competitive game as the Suns rolled over the Wizards 121-95. (Photo by Max Simbron)
I'm not going to lie. I totally predicted a blow out tonight. Which isn't saying all that much because what Suns/NBA fan didn't see this one coming?
What with the Wiz generally playing poor anyway and having played the night before in Golden State and barely edging out the Warriors at the end of that game.
But Wizards head coach Flip Saunders wanted none of that, "You can come up with excuses every night why not to play...It's almost as though the last thing we wanted to do was to be out there tonight. It's pretty much unacceptable."
Unacceptable, unless your name is Gilbert Arenas and bombing away is your game.
Agent "Double O" Zero was deadly tonight but to the wrong side. He put up 17 shots only connecting on 5 of them in the first half "leading" his team to an overall shooting percentage of 37.5% through the first 24 minutes. But fortunately for the Wizards he got it together in the locker room at half time and only jacked up four more in the first 6 minutes of third quarter as the Suns dropped 39 points on a Wizards team that visibly gave up playing defense.
Thank you Gilbert Arenas. It was a pleasure watching a volume shooter in action. Last night you torched the Warriors for 45 points on 25 attempts. Tonight, 22 points on 21 attempts.
Live by the Gilbert. Die by the Gilbert.
This looked a lot like an undisciplined team which is exactly what Flip said about his squad, "I think we understand now that to be good we have to be disciplined in our approach both on the offensive end and the defensive end. And our guys have to understand that that means they have to sacrifice certain things...As I told them, I gave a lot of rope early to see where they were. Now we know."
As for the home team, they did pretty well and were happy about that. Not so much happy as satisfied. They took care of business and they knew they were playing a team that didn't have their hearts in the game. As Steve Nash pointed out, "There was a point in the game tonight where you could feel the air going out of their, uh, their attack."
Nash had 15 assists in three quarters of play (29 min) which was one more than the entire Wizards team.
Amare had his fifth 20 and 10 game of the season and his fourth double-double in the last five games. And aside for a few moments, didn't look particularly engaged.
In fact, other than Jason Richardson and Goran Dragic, the Suns didn't seem to have much fire at all. Perhaps this was their new plan to avoid big let downs. Slow and steady wins the race and in this case the race was over by about half way through the third period when the Suns extended their 16 point lead to 25 points and then put the pedal down to pull away for good.
Speaking of Goran, he had another impressive game. His defense on Gilbert in the first half was outstanding and as Gentry said, he ran the team well in the fourth quarter. He finished with 12 points, 4 rebounds and 3 assists and looked really really good.
Steve Nash had this to say about young "Frosty" Dragic as compared to Leandro Barbosa, "Leandro is an explosive scorer where as Goran's more of a point guard."
I asked Steve specifically if he thought that Goran was a point guard and he said that he is but that he can still improve his passing. Nash said it is always easier to play the two guard position for a young player but that he sees Goran as a point guard.
For those interested Nash's take on the "Can Goran be a Point Guard" debate (and you know who I am talking about) you can listen to what Nash had to say. I think his opinion might carry some weight on the matter:
- Suns 1st offensive possession. Hill iso? So much for ball movement
- Neither team playing much D to start game. 6-6 after 2 minutes
- Wizards offense consists of Gilbert Arenas doing whatever he feels like
- Crowd dead. Team flat. Coincidence?
- Earl BOYkins is small
- Wizards court chemistry looks like a 6th grade science class for the blind
- JRich outside shot not falling but still playing hard getting to rim and attacking glass
- Wiz put Nick Young on Nash and Boykins on Dragic. Suns didn't go to Dragic once. Shame
- Dragic playing solid D on Gilbert. Stayed in front of him keeping him from getting shot of and then pressure hard on the perimeter
- Suns D more engaged to start 2nd quarter up 38-23 at 9:00 mark. Let down?
- Dragic gets whistled for a lot of bogus calls but is looking solid driving to the rim
- Dragic forcing D to respect his drive attracting more help so he dishes to Lou for an easy dunk. Goran is a better passer on the move than LB and a far better defender
- Suns up 14 with 5:37 to go. Nash hasn't played in the 2nd quarter at all
- Nash back in. Lead down to 11. Trade him. Bench him. Whatever...
- The Wizards just shoot anything, anytime. I see why Flip is pissed
- Suns start quarter on 6-0 run. Wizards call time out. Maybe that TO will cool off Gilberts shot attempts. 18 and counting (only 5 makes)
- Amare making some lazy plays on defense...and he knows it
- JaVale McGee getting minutes with the Wiz down 25
- This game is making me sleepy
- Amare with 14 points and 5 rebounds in the 3rd
- Suns up 31. Tacos early. Wizards playing possum. Playing really good possum. Too good perhaps
- Up 30. Does it really matter?
- Suns start 4th with Lopez, Amundson, Dudley, Tucker and Dragic
- No Clark?
- Lopez fouls people. Hard.
- I really have no idea how but Frosty dribbled through two defenders and hit a nice floating layup
- Clark in with about 8 min to play. Suns up 30...ish
- I like Nick Young
- Robin with a SICK up fake on McGee and drove right by him for the slam
- and Goran inside lob to Robin for another slam...nice