This game was never going to be a contest, as it seems the Suns waived the white flags before even leaving the locker room. Not only were the Suns without starting point guard Goran Dragic (ankle?), they were also without starting center Jermaine O'Neal (shin?). This left Kendall Marshall running the point along with Scola and Morris in the post, and Hamed Haddadi seeing extended minutes as the backup.
The Denver Nuggets were able to easily handle the Suns, with Wilson Chandler (21 points) and Andre Iguodala (20 points) leading the charge. The Suns were led by Luis Scola and his 17 points and 11 rebounds. Scola has been the one player who consistently gave their all even throughout this dire season, and it's only fitting that he continued his effort until the very end.
The good news is Kendall Marshall had a career high 14 assists as a starter, with zero turnovers...However, he also scored only 2 points on 1-5 shooting. Here's hoping Marshall continues to evolve his game in the off-season to become more than a one dimensional threat. Haddadi also contributed 14 points, 7 rebounds, and 2 blocks in his minutes...Definitely not bad for a third string center who was originally just trade filler.
With this comes the end of a long, painful season that many Suns fans will do their best to erase from their memories. The Suns finish 25-57, the worst record since their inaugural season in 1968-69.
As if the Suns' record isn't painful enough, the basketball gods saw fit to deal one more blow to Suns' fans tonight. Not only did the Suns fall to the 4th lottery position after the Cleveland Cavaliers
tanked lost to the Charlotte Bobcats, the Utah Jazz fell to the Memphis Grizzlies which now officially puts the L.A. Lakers in the 8th seed of the playoffs, regardless of whether they win or lose against the Houston Rockets tonight.
The Suns will now end up with the Miami Heat's first round pick instead, which is likely to be the 29th or 30th pick in the first round.
Hang in their Suns' fans...and stick around! We at Bright Side of the Sun will be covering all of the off season excitement of the coming draft and free agency period. We'll have a lot to talk about over this off-season, so be sure to check back regularly for all the latest news!
It's always darkest just before the dawn...and the Suns should be rising very soon.