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Final: Suns 77, Lakers 97

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In A Tale of Two Halves, the Suns lost. But at least in the second half, they had some life, right? Right?

It was that kind of night...
It was that kind of night...
Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of Foolishness [emphasis added], it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us..." -- Charles Dickens

How you view the outcome of this game likely depends on your outlook on life. In many ways, it parallels the above quote from Dickens. If you're all in on the Suns tanking, this is a part of that process that will, eventually, lead us to the promised land. If you're not all in on that process, this was awful.

As a Suns fan, the first half of this game was the single worst half of basketball I have ever had to endure.

The Suns came roaring out of the gate with 10 points in the first quarter. In the second quarter, they started firing on all cylinders and scored...12. A 22 point first half.

The team had no energy. There was no passion. There was no fire.

It wasn't just that, though. Even when the players seemed to care, they were just...bad. In the first half, the offense seemed to run the same broken play on repeat. At one point in the 2nd quarter, the team was shooting just 2 for 15. It wasn't until a late run (in the last 90 seconds of the half) that the Suns got away from the ignominy of having a single digit scoring quarter.

After a ten point first quarter.

Whatever the warts were, however, going into the half, the team came out much better offensively after the break. There was some offensive flow and balance. Brandon Knight rose from the grave a bit. Mirza Teletovic became a factor. Ronnie Price provided some much needed energy.

Unfortunately, the team was somehow worse defensively. The team gave up 54 second half points.

The Lakers were a superior team in every facet of the game tonight. They outrebounded the Suns, 54-45. They were far more efficient, hitting 45% overall and 36% from three, compared to 36% and 22%. They moved the ball far better, 26 assists to 16. Hell, they managed to get 13 points out of Roy Hibbert. Who, not surprisingly, hasn't had that many points since he put up 14 points against us in November. Can we sign him in the offseason? Larry Nance Jr. also continued his emergence, putting up 15 points and 14 rebounds on 7/10 shooting.

For those counting, this is 9 straight losses for the Suns. Their next game is Wednesday, January 6th against Charlotte.

It was over when: Roy Hibbert sunk two mid-range shots in the opening minutes. Seriously. It was over that quickly.

Least offensive performance: Brandon Knight (25 points, 9 assists)

Most embarrassing play(s): Tyson Chandler missing not one, but two uncontested dunks in quick succession.