clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Center of the Sun: Phoenix Suns take over 2nd place!

New, comments

The Suns' losing streak is up to 12 with only four games left to play.

NBA: Houston Rockets at Phoenix Suns Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to the weekly news roundup of your Phoenix Suns.

Game Recaps

@ Atlanta Hawks L (95-91) Full Recap

vs LA Clippers L (124-118) Full Recap

@ Portland Trailblazers L (130-117) Full Recap

vs Houston Rockets L (123-116) Full Recap

With a Lakers win earlier in the day the Phoenix Suns' tank seemed to rolling ahead at full steam but the Suns had to give the tank fans a bit of a scare against Houston before finally falling to the Rockets. The Suns losing streak now stands at 12 but they have moved ahead of the Lakers for 2nd in the reverse standings. And no matter what happens in these last four games the Suns cannot fall any further than 3rd in the reverse standings. Even if they somehow magically manage to win all four remaining games, no team other than the Lakers can lose enough to pass the Suns.

Hopefully all of the losing will be worth it after the lottery. Even if the Suns finish the season second in the reverse standings they could still wind up picking as low as 5th after the final bounce of the lotto ping pong balls.

And we finally got to see some Dragan Bender on the court again! Only 14 minutes worth but he put up a very good stat line of 9 points, 7 rebounds and 2 blocks. If T.J. Warren had played, the Suns might have fooled around and won that game.

Key Stat

40.7 mpg, 14.8 ppg, 9.1 apg, 3.9 rpg, 1.4 spg

Those are Tyler Ulis' stats in the the eleven games that he has started. Not too shabby for any rookie point guard let alone one who is 5'9". And he got his career high of 34 points last night against Houston and came up only one assist and one rebound short of getting his first career triple-double.

Stats courtesy of NBA.com

Quote of the Week

"I want to win. I want to get in the playoffs. I never thought about players sitting or the other side of the game. That was like a right hook I didn’t see coming. But I got back up. And I think our young guys have responded well.” - Earl Watson

Rookie Report

Marquese Chriss - 28.8 mpg, 13.8 ppg, 7.0 rpg, 1.3 apg, 0.5 spg, 1.8 bpg

Tyler Ulis - 40.6 mpg, 19.0 ppg, 9.3 apg, 5.3 rpg, 0.8 spg, 2.3 TOpg

Derrick Jones Jr. - 28.3 mpg, 9.3 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 0.3 apg, 1.3 spg, 0.3 bpg

Dragan Bender - 14.2 mpg, 9.0 ppg, 7.0 rpg, 0.0 apg, 0.0 spg, 2.0 bpg

Stats courtesy of NBA.com

All stats courtesy of NBA.com

Reverse Standings

1. Brooklyn Nets (18-59)

2. Phoenix Suns (22-56), 3.5 GB

3. LA Lakers (22-55), 4.0 GB

4. Orlando Magic (27-50), 9.0 GB

5. Philadelphia 76ers (28-49), 10.0 GB

6. New York Knicks (29-48), 11.0 GB

7. Sacramento Kings (30-47), 12.0 GB

8. Minnesota Timberwolves (30-45), 13.0 GB

Boston has the right to swap picks with Brooklyn this year. The Lakers' pick goes to Philadelphia if it falls out of the top 3. Philadelphia also has the right to swap picks with Sacramento this year as long as that pick falls within the top 10. If Sacramento's pick falls out of the top 10 it goes to Chicago. New Orleans' pick goes to Sacramento if it falls out of the top 3.

These numbers are courtesy of Hoops Rumors.

News & Notes

Suns' Earl Watson surprised by management 'right hook'. Doug Haller/ AZCentral Sports

Bickley: Tanking Phoenix Suns still have spirit. Dan Bickley/AZCentral Sports

For now, the Suns can bask in the glow of Devin Booker’s 70-point game. But what’s next? The Washington Post

Espo: Is Devin Booker Kobe Bryant 2.0? Greg Esposito/Sports 360 AZ

NBA Rookie of the Year race: Suns' Marquese Chriss moves into top three. USA TODAY Sports

Devin Booker Joins Ranks of Kobe, Wilt, Jordan with 70-point Outburst. The Bleacher Report

Have We Underestimated Devin Booker? Sir Charles in Charge

Suns Trivia

When Devin Booker scores 61 more total points he will move past Kobe Bryant into 4th on the list of most points scored by an NBA player before turning 21. Kobe scored 2,755 before turning 21. Booker now has 2,695.

Devin Booker has a total of 238 regular season three point shots made as a Sun. This ties him with former Sun Charles Barkley for 20th on that list and puts him just two made three pointers behind Jeff Hornacek (240) who is 19th on the list.

Stats courtesy of Basketball-Reference and Land of Basketball.com

This Week in Suns History

On April 6, 1993 with 1.6 seconds to go after the Suns lost a 20-point lead on Lakers and are down by 2 points, Dan Majerle takes the inbound pass and makes a 33-foot three-point basket for a 115-114 win. Majerle jumps on scorer's table to celebrate as cheers last for minutes. This was the Suns' first-ever season sweep of the Lakers.

On April 9, 1990 the Phoenix Suns sank an NBA record 61 free throws (out of 80 attempts) in beating the Utah Jazz 119-115 in overtime.

Previewing the Week (plus 2 days) Ahead

Wednesday, April 5th vs Golden State Warriors (63-14)

Friday, April 7th vs Oklahoma City Thunder (43-33)

Sunday, April 9th vs Dallas Mavericks (32-44)

Tuesday, April 11th @ Sacramento Kings (30-47

Only four games and nine days left in the Suns' season. Some of these last four games are harder than ever to predict. Will Golden State take the Suns lightly and rest any of their stars in preparation for the playoffs? If so the Suns might just pull out a win that night. The OKC game is a little easier to predict as they are probably still going to be playing everyone to keep their lead on Memphis for the 6th playoff seed. Dallas is out of the playoff race and might decide to bench Dirk Nowitzki for the rest of the season at any time and who the hell really knows what Sacramento is going to do.

The one thing that I'm certain of is that the Suns' young players are going to go out there, play hard and try to win. When other teams are putting their best effort out on the court, that hasn't been enough to get a W yet but who knows what might happen in these last few games.

It would probably be best for the Suns to go 0-4 this week but I have a sneaking suspicion that they will wind up getting a win anyway.

How do you think the Suns will fare? Will the Suns win another game before the end of the season?

And finally...

Poll

How do you feel about the Suns tanking?

This poll is closed

  • 37%
    I’m all for it.
    (215 votes)
  • 8%
    I hate it.
    (51 votes)
  • 53%
    It’s a necessary evil.
    (302 votes)
568 votes total Vote Now