Twenty-six points to lead the Suns, along with the huge clutch game-winning shot, combined with 2 blocks and 2 steals as the evidence of his always-stellar defense. To cap it off, he grabs the rebound and makes the And yet when he streaked in from the wing on a fast break, I was still surprised when he dunked the ball instead of a smooth layup.
Grant Hill. What else can you say?
This was a great win for the Suns and, I don't like to play the "what if" game, but wow is it frustrating to think of all the games wasted this season before finally getting to this point.
The balance. The effort. The bench. The mental toughness to overcome deficits and bad calls. It all just makes the first 62% of the season so much more frustrating.
But here we are with the team missing two of its top scorers and they've put up huge numbers offensively and have managed to get big wins over statistical betters. As I've said many times, even if the playoffs don't happen, I just want to see the Suns play hard and show what the can do. They've not disappointed over the past couple six games.
Bullet Points of Death
- The Jazz played pretty well considering their miserable road record and the fact that they played the Rockets last night
- D Will is amazing but seemed to tire down the stretch. He missed a couple of pull up jumpers that he easily makes. He was forced to play 22 out of 24 minutes when rookie and new Suns fan darling, Goran Dragic, lit up (maybe too strong of a phrase) Brevin Knight. Sloan was forced to play Williams the entire 4th quarter while Nash was able to get four more minutes of rest. Crucial? Maybe
- If I were I Jazz fan, I would be pulling my closely cropped buzz cut hair out over Mehmet Okur, who, during the same game, was horrible and fantastic seemingly from play to play. In the end his line was 6-17 for 15 points including 2-6 from the line. He did have 12 rebounds but that was because he was missing so many layups. So overall horrible with some fantastic sprinkled in for tease
- Speaking of tease, how about Matt Frickin Barnes. Dude goes 1-5 in the first half (including missing two 3pt'ers, one of which drew side of the backboard) and the comes out in the second half and puts his head down and attacks the rim. He was 7 for 9 for 18 points and one of his misses was a 3. Matt Barnes has no conscience, which did serve the Suns well when it came time to calmly nail 2 free throws to end the game. No fear in this guy. I would just like to see that channeled more towards defense, rebounding and driving the ball and less towards launching threes. Oh, Matt. Why do you play us this way?
- Nash and Shaq led the Suns starters in fewest points, with 12 each. Nash had one more point than Dragic but check this: He was not hitting his shot so he STOPPED SHOOTING (hear that, Matt?) and did other things, namely dished 14 dimes and, in the process, took over the 9th spot for all-time assists. Great game
- Bullet points FTW
- The Suns played a lot of zone again but we saw how the better executing Jazz were able to bust it effectively, especially in the 1st half, where Suns had a slight 30-24 point advantage in the paint. In the 2nd half, the Suns "clamped down" defensively and forced the Jazz into more outside shots which led to more fast break opportunities which led to a 36-14 whooping in points in the paint
- Is Carlos Boozer back from his injury? Was he in this game? I didn't notice
- For most of this game, I thought that the ref's were calling fouls on the Suns that they were letting go on other end. The numbers don't support that, though, since both teams shot 27 free throws
- Of course the Jazz only made 16 of 27 while the Suns were 22 of 27. In a close game, those misses are deadly, and that 6 extra points helped the Suns close a 23-13 second chance points advantage for the bigger Jazz
- This game really was a contrast in styles with the Jazz using their size on the glass and the Suns using their speed in the open court. Classic duel in which the little guys won. This time
Overall another great gutsy win for the Suns. Let's hope they can keep this going and win at least one of the next two and count on the Cavs and/or Nugs to hang some losses on the Mavs.
Post game audio from Sports 620 KTAR with Barnes, Amundson, JRich, Jerry Sloan, Boozer and Williams