With last night's results the Suns magic number for a playoff berth is now 3....
Wednesday March 24th Western Conference Results:
Utah Jazz 113 Toronto Raptors 87 (Recap) -The Raptors were at home, it was Chris Bosh's birthday, and they are in a dog fight at the bottom of the Eastern Conference playoff race...didn't matter. Utah blew them away in the first quarter and it was never close. Toronto is 3-12 against the 8 current Western Conference playoff teams - fortunately they only have one such tilt left (Friday v. Denver).
Boston Celtics 113 Denver Nuggets 99 (Recap) - Boston used 27 from Paul Pierce to send the Nuggets to their 3rd straight loss. It's games like these (and schedules like the Jazz have) that lead me to believe the Suns stand a much better chance of catching Denver than Utah. With the news that George Karl may be out until the playoffs and playing without Kenyon Martin - the Nuggets may be in a bit of trouble.
Oklahoma City Thunder 122 Houston Rockets 104 (Recap) - The Fightin' Durants came into this game having lost 3 of 4 but a little home cookin' against the Rockets was all they needed to keep pace in the West. On the other side of things - Houston's slim playoff hopes took another major hit with the loss. Before long they'll be off this update.
Los Angeles Lakers 92 San Antonio Spurs 83 (Recap) - In what amounted to a battle of two evils for Suns fans, the Lakers rallied from 10 down in the first to beat the Spurs. I know it's unnatural to pull for LAL but you better get used to it over the next 3 weeks as they have games against Oklahoma City, Utah, San Antonio, Portland, and Denver. Deep breaths. Why settle for second when first is available? Because first isn't available this time.
Golden State Warriors 128 Memphis Grizzlies 110 (Recap) - Speaking of barely staying on this update....nothing spells lottery quite like a loss to the Warriors. For the Dubs, Reggie Williams proved he wasn't a fluke by posting 23 points in his 29 minutes and the recently deceased Anthony Tolliver hit for 12.
Western Conference Standings:
|1. LA Lakers||53||18||.746||-||7-3||WON 7|
|2. Dallas||47||24||.662||6||7-3||WON 1|
|3. Denver||47||25||.653||6.5||6-4||LOST 3|
|4. Utah||47||25||.653||6.5||7-3||WON 3|
|5. SUNS||45||26||.634||8||8-2||WON 5|
|6. Oklahoma City||43||27||.614||9.5||7-3||WON 1|
|7. San Antonio||42||28||.600||10.5||6-4||LOST 1|
|8. Portland||42||29||.592||11||8-2||LOST 1|
|- Memphis||38||34||.528||15.5||6-4||LOST 1|
|- Houston||36||34||.514||16.5||6-4||LOST 2|
Thursday March 25th Western Conference Games:
Clippers @ Rockets - obvious must-win for the Rockets to stay alive.
Mavericks @ Blazers - depending on how you look at it, this is a no-lose for Suns fans. Someone in the top 8 is going to lose half a game.