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View from the Homefront Part 2: Suns Spurt Past Bulls 112-102

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I'm going to remember this game as:
  1. The most exciting game I have seen at the US Airways Center to date.

  2. My first attempt to photograph an NBA game.
(Shawn Marion is going to remember it as something else)

To explain #1 to those who aren't regular readers here, I live out of state and only get to see a Suns home game whenever I make my way out this direction. It's always been at the beginning of the season when the team is not yet at its best and/or (as was the case on Tuesday), not playing against a team that gave the crowd anything to be excited about. This means my experience with the crowd at the USAC has been similar to Mike D'Antoni's assessment after the game on Tuesday: Severely lacking in enthusiasm. That was not the case tonight, as the Suns closed out the game in thrilling fashion, going on one of their patented scoring spurts to finish off the Bulls 112-102. The crowd was really into this game. Even when the Suns let the Bulls back in it, the fans kept cheering them on. By the time the game was over, Steve Nash was getting the MVP chants when he went to the free throw line. It was a great atmosphere, and it was a lot of fun to be a part of it. The win brings the Suns into a four-way tie with the Spurs, Hornets, and Jazz for the top spot in the Western Conference standings.

The Suns were on fire in the fourth quarter
The real adventure of the night for me personally was to snap a few photos to satisfy my inner tourist, and also to spruce this place up a little. I knew going in this was going to be difficult. Wide-open indoor venues are not my forte as a "serious amateur" photographer. Trying to zoom in on someone from the 10th row in a wide-open indoor venue is even worse. I wasn't sure what to expect, and having flipped through the results, it's safe to say that I got some of what I wanted, but nowhere close to enough. Most of the "action" shots didn't work at all, so what I ended up with were several shots of players standing around during timeouts and warmups, or shooting free throws. The couple of times I managed to catch someone going for a dunk ended up in one big blur. Let's just say I have a lot to learn about sports photography, and I have gained a new found respect for those who can do it well. After spending the past two hours trying to clean up a few of the shots I took, I am going to forgo the rest of the recap and just post some of what I got. It's not great, but hopefully it's a start. View from the Homefront Part 3 (more pictures from something else Suns-related I did today) will be posted early next week.

The Suns huddle during a timeout

LB shoots a free throw

Raja Bell heading for the layup line

Marcus Banks didn't get to play on TNT, but at least he gets to be in my recap.

Heading back to the fray

Steve points the way

The Matrix greets the press

It's a wrap

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