The Phoenix Suns don't have nearly as much talent as a lot of other teams in the NBA. This is no secret, even Steve Nash said as much both before the season started and more recently after the Suns lost at home to the Toronto Raptors.
As Steve said, the Suns are going to have to "find a little magic and our chemistry and cohesion" to win games.
Instead of chemistry, cohesion and magic, they've seemingly given up the ghost, thrown in the towel and through their play screamed, "no más".
This team got blown out on the road by Portland prompting Grant Hill to say after the game that the team "rolled over". They managed to bounce back and barely beat the Grizzlies at home showing some faint memory of pride, and then completely tanked against the Mavericks in a game where the defensive intensity was laughable.
That lack of effort carried over to the first half of the Hornets game where players of dubious NBA pedigree torched the Suns in the paint before the team rallied like a once proud, but now dying tiger to lash out a final time.
If you want to see what the difference between a team playing hard and a team going through the motions looks like, watch the two halves of that game.
The real test came Friday night. What kind of team is this? Would that second half carry over and at least spark some sort of competitive result?
No. The Suns rolled over again for the third (and a half) time in their last five games.
Here's a sample of what the leader of this fine team said after the loss in Houston:
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"When you play this team, you've got to play grown-man basketball," Gentry said. "We didn't do that. We got pushed around."
"I wasn't pleased with anything that our team did tonight. I wasn't pleased with one thing that we did. There's no bright spots. There's no moral victories. There's no anything. We have to play to win basketball games, and we've got to do a much, much better job than what we did. We've got to get the energy level up, and that's on me."
"I'm the coach. I'm supposed to make them play hard, and I will."
You can forgive a bad game here or there. You can understand, especially this season with this schedule, that teams aren't going to "bring it" each and every night.
But what the Suns are showing us is the opposite. They're showing us that they're a team that can only be bothered to fight for a half a game here, or for the occasional game there after a particularly bad performance.
That's the sign of a team that's given up on themselves and their season.
Some of you might be happy with that -- the more losses they have the better their chances in the NBA lottery. But there's a difference between playing hard and getting beat by a better team and not showing up to play at all. Most fans can understand the first but will never forgive the second.
That's what we are seeing right now and if it continues, Robert Sarver will have to pull the trigger and make a change. Losing is one thing, not even trying to win is an entirely different and unacceptable matter.
The entire organization needs to look in the mirror and figure this one out.
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