Your Phoenix Suns are officially on a winning streak. That’s not a misprint.
On Saturday night in Phoenix the Suns won their second consecutive game, outlasting the Minnesota Timberwolves, 107-99. It’s the first time Phoenix has won back to back contests since December 26th of last season.
Devin Booker played for the first time since December 2nd, and he didn’t disappoint. Robert Covington was tasked with covering Booker and Book did what Book does against the typically above average defender. He’d finish with 28 points, seven rebounds, and seven assists.
Saturday night was a fun night to be a Suns fan.
Good: T.J. Warren got off to another hot start. Two days after pouring in 30 against the Mavericks, including 11 in the first quarter, Warren led Phoenix scorers with nine after 12 minutes of play.
Bad: Deandre Ayton managed to pick up two fouls just three minutes into the game. Perhaps that’s good news for fans of Richaun Holmes. Ayton would sit the rest of the first. Karl-Anthony Towns racked up 12 points and five rebounds in the opening period.
Minnesota: 30 Phoenix: 28
Good: Booker started to hit his stride. We didn’t see much explosiveness, but in his first half of basketball following a six-game absence courtesy of a left hamstring sprain, Booker managed 13 points on 5 of 6 shooting and five assists.
Bad: More Towns. Lots of Towns. Suns head coach Igor Kokoskov left Ayton in the game after picking up foul number three 90 seconds into the second quarter. It didn’t matter much. Towns had a game-high 21 points and six boards at the half.
Minnesota: 58 Phoenix: 56
Good: Yeah, Book started feeling pretty good. Good enough that Suns fans went on triple-double watch in the third. He played some pretty smart basketball using the pieces around him, De’Anthony Melton and Mikal Bridges in particular, and finished the quarter with 26 points, five rebounds, and seven assists.
Bad: To his credit Josh Jackson led the Suns with a +11 through three, for whatever that’s worth. He also shot 1-9 in 20 minutes and is looking more and more expendable by the second.
Phoenix: 85 Minnesota: 82
Good: We all expected the Suns to fall apart in the fourth. I did, you did, we all did. Three quarters of mostly competent basketball is more than we’re accustomed to. But Phoenix hit another gear. The Suns opened the final quarter on an 11-2 run and stretched the lead to double digits.
Bad: Now you have a little bit of hope against a team that’s still 6-24 overall. Enjoy this one, but pump the breaks. You’re smart, you know not to get worked up.
Also, Derrick Rose finished with 26 points on 11-15 shooting. And I know he’s having a comeback year and everything, but that’s too many points to that guy. Good teams don’t allow that to happen.
Phoenix: 107 Minnesota: 99
Your Suns travel to New York for a 5:30 p.m. MT tip with the Knicks. Phoenix will take a crack at winning three straight for the first time since March of 2017. That kicks off a five-game road trip that ends the day after Christmas in Orlando.