We here at the great Bright Side of the Sun like to celebrate the joys of the Phoenix Suns and commiserate over their misfortune.
We often prop each other up, and occasionally knock each other down. But it's sibling-style knocks and props around these here parts. Each prop up is tinged with a bit a of sarcasm and short-lived back-patting. Each knock down is done without malice, just meant as an impassioned argument with one we take for granted will be there tomorrow regardless.
We have a great community here at Bright Side, one that I cherish even while buried in "family time" out here in the real world. Thank you for giving me a forum for my Suns voice for the past few years, and I hope for years to come. I love you guys.
As I sit here in my pajamas, waiting for my visiting parents to awaken so we can go see my niece (the only one left who believes in the fat red guy flying all over the world in a single night) revel in what Santa brought her, I am reflective of my life as a Suns fan.
Ghosts of Christmas Past
I remember Christmas Day a few years ago when Suns vs. Spurs was still the top-billed game of the day. The Suns hosted the Spurs on that day, boasting the great Shaquille O'Neal at center, Amare Stoudemire at PF, Steve Nash at PG and Grant Hill at SF.
The Suns had just shipped Boris Diaw and Raja Bell to Charlotte for Jason Richardson and Jared Dudley. Neither player made a huge impact that season, though Richardson started at SG the whole season.
The Suns fought hard to win and had the game in hand with a 2-pointer from Grant Hill with mere seconds left. One defensive stand would seal the victory.
The crowd was rocking. We cheered throughout the timeout and the next Spurs possession. Grant Hill had the chance to score the winning bucket AND get the winning stop.
But then Tony Parker drove against Grant, sucked in the defense of Jason Richardson off of Roger Mason in the corner and flipped the ball to Mason for buzzer-beating 3-pointer to win the game by 1.
The crowd was rocking, but as the ball swished the net all 19,023 people went dead silent at the same time. You could have heard a pin drop.
Shaquille O'Neal tossed the post-game buffet. The team was devastated, and proceeded to lose a bunch of games while freezing out Terry Porter and getting him fired.
Ghosts of Christmas Present
Ghosts are the only thing you'd see in US Airways Center today because the Suns are no longer relevant enough to interrupt their family day with a nationally-televised game.
Robert Sarver is sleeping in, likely wondering what happened to his ticket sales and... well, I have no idea what Robert is thinking today. He can't be happy with the current state of events, nor can he be thrilled with the prospect of adding a ton of payroll again unless it's a sure-fire return to glory.
Ghosts of Christmas Future
Maybe Robert is envisioning a great future for the Suns, but it is unclear what "great" means to him. He thoroughly enjoyed the Phoenix Mercury's championships over the last several years, and I know he is a competitive guy who wants his team to win. He still attends all Suns games too.
Hopefully, someone visits him today to show him the grave of the Suns future unless the tide is turned and momentum is shifted. The Suns need a star or two or three in a BIG way.
Let's hope Robert's Christmas is a filled distaste for his empty arena and a resolve to rectify the situation very quickly.
In the meantime, let's enjoy the lives we have and recognize that misery does love company so we all really do love each other. A lot.