Welcome to the weekly news roundup of your Phoenix Suns.
I will never figure this team out. The Suns lose to the Mavericks and then turn around and beat the Spurs who have the second best record in the NBA and then play the Jazz a very close game before losing even with their leading rebounder (Tyson Chandler) out for the game. But I do understand that Devin Booker is going to be a great player. Back to back 39 point games in Mexico City and then he "only" scored another 25 against the Jazz. In Thursday's game he set a Suns team record by scoring 28 points in the fourth quarter and on Saturday he became the first Suns player to score over 35 points in consecutive games on two separate occasions (Nov. 4-6 and Jan. 12-14) in a single season since Tom Chambers did it back in 1990.
Although the Suns went 1-2 this week they still managed to rise(?) to third in the reverse standings with a record of 13-28 at the midpoint of this season.
34.3 ppg, FGs - 56.3%, 3 pointers - 58.8%, FTs - 91.3%
Those are Devin Booker's numbers for the last three games. Those percentages for field goals and 3 point shooting are insane considering how inefficiently Booker has been scoring at times this season. With those three performances Devin scored a total of 103 points and moved ahead of Eric Bledsoe to become the Suns' leading scorer with a 20.4 ppg average for the season (Bledsoe's average is 20.3 ppg).
Stats courtesy of ESPN.com.
Quotes of the Week
"I love this franchise, I love the city of Phoenix, so to be in the record books like that at a young age, it means a lot to me." - Devin Booker
"You have to play nasty. I think sometimes younger players feel like that's not a cool way to play. There's no cool way to play in the NBA. You can't be cool and win games. So whether you're the Cavs or San Antonio or Golden State, whenever they play each other it's always a nasty game. It's always a scrap. It's always edgy. It's always elbows. Someone's always falling. Our team did a great job in the second half of creating a style of basketball defensively that created an edge." - Earl Watson after the Cleveland game
Marquese Chriss - 17.9 mpg, 7.2 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 0.6 apg, 0.5 spg, 0.5 bpg
Dragan Bender - 12.7 mpg, 3.3 ppg, 2.2 rpg, 0.4 apg, 0.3 spg, 0.5 bpg
Tyler Ulis - 9.3 mpg, 3.2 ppg, 0.6 rpg, 1.2 apg, 0.7 spg
All stats courtesy of Real GM.
News & Notes
Earl Watson molding young Suns into a future contender. The Salt Lake Tribune
Devin Booker breaks Suns franchise record.
Mexican roots run deep with the Phoenix Suns. NBA.com
Phoenix Suns youngsters: Next step is playing with an edge. Doug Haller/AzCentral Sports
An Early Progress Report on the Suns’ Frontcourt of the Future. Jonathan Tjarks/The Ringer
The 2013 draft (when the Suns selected Alex Len 5th) may have been the worst NBA draft ever. Washington Post
5 Teams That Should Trade For Tyson Chandler. Hoops Habit
10 Trade Targets Who Could Help A Playoff Team. Hoops Habit
Seven Days of Suns Trade-mas: The all-in move for Boogie. Kellan Olson/Arizona Sports (There are several articles in this series and you can find links to all of them within the article.)
Only two triple overtime games have ever been played in an NBA Finals series and the Phoenix Suns played in both of them. The first was in Game 5 of the 1976 Finals which the Suns lost to the Boston Celtics 128-126. The second was in 1993 Finals in which the Suns defeated the Chicago Bulls 129-121. Paul Westphal played for the Suns in the first game and was the head coach of the Suns in the second.
This Week in Suns History
On January 20, 1970 Phoenix's Dick Van Arsdale and Cincinnati's Tom Van Arsdale become the first brothers to play in the same All-Star Game. Dick scored eight points for the West team, while Tom scored five for the East, which won the game 142-135 in Philadelphia.
On January 22, 1968 the NBA Board of Governors decided that the cities of Phoenix and Milwaukee would be granted NBA franchises. The then still unnamed Phoenix franchise had a contest to find a name for the new team. Click on the contest link to see a list of some of the names that were suggested for the team back then.
Previewing the Week Ahead
Thursday, January 19th @ Cleveland Cavaliers (29-11)
Saturday January 21st @ New York Knicks (18-24)
Sunday January 22nd, @ Toronto Raptors (27-13)
After taking a working vacation in Mexico City before a game back home in Phoenix against the Jazz, the Suns head out on a tough three game road trip in the East.
First up the Suns head to Cleveland for their second clash with the Cavs on Thursday night. You have to pick Cleveland in this one even though they've had some struggles lately and the Suns played them tough in their last match-up.
On Saturday the Suns head to the Big Apple for what should be the easiest game on their schedule this week against the Knicks. Danger, Will Robinson! We all know that the Suns seem to have a habit of losing to bad teams and the Knicks aren't that bad although they've been playing very badly as of late (2-8 in their last 10 games). But I'll give the Suns the benefit of the doubt and call this one a 50/50 game.
And finally the Suns head to Toronto to take on the Raptors on the second night of a back-to-back. It’s another likely loss even though the Suns won their first meet with the Raps in Phoenix.
It looks like a possible 0-3 week to me but I'm really at a loss at figuring out which games the Suns might win anymore so who knows what will actually happen on any given night. But that’s one thing that makes Suns games interesting to watch this season.
How do you think the Suns will fare this week?