Isn’t it nice to sit back and relax for a week?
The Phoenix Suns, by virtue of earning the #2 seed in the Western Conference, do not have to play another basketball game until this weekend. This allows the team to rest, to heal, and to game plan for their eventual first round opponent.
Deandre Ayton, who missed the final three gams of the regular season with left knee soreness, has the chance to reinvigorate, renew, and rejuvenate. You know, all of those good “re” words. His presence is vital to a Suns playoff run and the team will need his lateral quickness to anchor the paint.
On Monday Suns owner Robert Saver shared the state of Cameron Johnson on the Arizona Sports Burns & Gambo Show. “I know Cam was getting his cast off today and getting checked by the doctor,” Sarver stated. There is a chance we will see Cam inserted back into the rotation.
Wednesday night is the first mile-marker of note as the Los Angeles Lakers host the Golden State Warriors for the right to come to Phoenix. The winner will travel to the Valley. The only question is: When?
The Suns may have let us in on when we should expect the Suns to play their first playoff game in over a decade.
See you in our house Sunday.— Phoenix Suns (@Suns) May 18, 2021
If that is true, if the Suns host the winner of the Lakers/Warriors game on Sunday, May 23, it will be the first playoff game for the organization and in Phoenix, Arizona in 4,012 days.
The challenge will be great as the Suns are guaranteed to face a former league MVP, whether it be LeBron James or Stephen Curry.
Steph Curry has taken the Warriors, a team decimated with injuries, and willed them to the 8 seed. For the second time in his career (2015-16), Curry led the league in scoring, posting 32.0 points-per-game and to a 39-33 record. He is a deadly scorer with unlimited range and can become hotter from beyond the arc than blacktop pavement during an Arizona summer.
The Lakers have had their fair share of injuries as well, but despite being the #7 seed, they are still +450 favorites to win the title.
NBA Playoff time! Which teams' odds surprise you the most?— The Association on FOX (@TheAssociation) May 17, 2021
(Odds via @FOXBet) pic.twitter.com/bPlOg76kaQ
LeBron is coming off of an ankle injury, which he has reminded us of every chance can. “I had a grown man diving at my leg for a loose ball.” ”I don’t think I will ever get back to 100 percent in my career.” I’m not falling for the “I’m hurt” narratives. The LeBron and Anthony Davis duo features 2 of the top 5 guys in the league.
It doesn’t matter who the Suns have to play. As Chris Paul stated in his postgame interview with TNT’s Charles Barkley, “I’ve been in the West my whole career. West ain’t never been easy. I don’t care who you playing, what series it is, what game it is...I played in New Orleans when I was in that division with Memphis, Houston, with Yao and T-Mac, and Dallas when they was nice with Dirk and Stackhouse. The West has always been a beast.”
Paul went on to add, “If you try to match up with somebody else, you still get it handed to you. You can’t duck nobody”.
So Sunday it is. Who cares who it is against.
The time has come for fans to experience the Suns’ postseason experience once again. Circle Sunday on your calendars. Get amped. Get excited. Get crazy. Get loud. Get to the stadium if you can (afford it).