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Final Score: Suns handle pesky Mavs 112-104 for 11th straight victory

The Suns took control down the stretch to beat the Doncic-less Mavericks Friday night.

NBA: Dallas Mavericks at Phoenix Suns Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

The Phoenix Suns kept their winning streak alive Friday night with a solid win over the Dallas Mavericks, 112-104, pulling away late with a 31-11 run to start the fourth quarter to make it 11 straight victories.

The Mavericks, continuing to miss superstar Luka Doncic, were game and kept the contest tight until the fourth quarter. But the Suns took command and would not be denied. It was a good team win for the Suns, who did play sloppy at times but got the job done when it mattered.

Mikal Bridges had a perfect shooting night (7-7 field goals, 2-2 FTs), the bench stepped up in scoring and the team made nearly 50% of their threes.

Like has happened a lot lately, the Suns coasted through the first three quarters, keeping the game close and then BAM they kill the opponent in the fourth. They are the best clutch team in the league this season.

The Phoenix Suns are now 11-3 this year, off to their best start since 2009, and their 11-game winning streak is the franchise’s longest streak since the 2006-07 Suns won 17 straight, which came only three games after a 15-game streak in a stunning and still-unbelievable 33 wins in 35 game stretch that season.

First half:

Jalen Brunson came out very strong for the Mavericks in the opening minutes, aggressively attacking the basket and finding teammates for quality looks. But the Suns matched that energy and the first quarter became an entertaining back and forth contest. Mikal Bridges starred for the Suns, scoring 10 points on a perfect 4/4 shooting in the opening quarter to lead the Suns to a 27-24 lead at the end of the first.

The second quarter continued in much the same way, with both squads trading some impressive play and some ugly sequences. Bridges remained on fire, finishing the first half with 17 points on 6/6 shooting. This effectively countered what was an ugly first half for Devin Booker, who managed only 6 points on 3/12 from the field.

55-51 Suns at the half.

Second half:

Booker seemed to shake off the bad first half performance, hitting a couple of shots fairly quickly including a 30 footer off the dribble that forced a Mavs timeout. The Mavericks pulled out to a lead, credit to some big buckets from Kristaps Porzingis and Tim Hardaway, Jr, but the Suns didn’t back down. The Suns seemed to be looking for the Javale McGee lob throughout the game, and it seemed to be fairly readily available. He finished with 14 points and 6 rebounds.

84-79 Mavs after 3.

The Suns began to assert themselves midway through the fourth quarter, pulling away to lead by 8 points on a Jae Crowder triple with 7:29 to play. Chris Paul was masterful down the stretch, and finished with 18 points and 14 assists. A Booker three to make it 108-95 with under three minutes to play basically sealed the deal. He notched 19 points on 7/20 shooting on the night. Bridges had a quiet second half offensively, but stayed perfect from the field to end the game with 19 points on 7/7.

Deandre Ayton wasn’t a big factor scoring the ball, but was a force on the boards with 17 rebounds in 29 minutes played.

Porzingis led the way for the Mavericks in defeat, tallying 23 points and 12 rebounds on an efficient 8/13 shooting. The Mavs fell to 9-6.

Up Next:

The Suns will have a home tussle with the Denver Nuggets Sunday.