The Phoenix Suns face the San Antonio Spurs Tuesday night at 7 p.m. MT. The game will be televised by Bally Sports AZ.
The Suns are very close to securing the No. 4 seed in the Western Conference. Phoenix needs two wins to officially wrap up the race, and a win against San Antonio would give it a very likely chance to do so outside of a few circumstances.
The Suns are perceived to be a heavy favorite against the Spurs, who have a 20-58 record this year and rank No. 14 in the Western Conference. San Antonio is far below the standard it set under coach Gregg Popovich with Hall of Fame players Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobli, but it still is well-coached and will be a challenge.
“I don’t think either one of us cherishes it (facing each other’s teams) because one of us has to lose,” Suns coach Monty Williams, who played under Popovich from the 1996-97 to 1997-98 seasons. I just enjoy seeing him and I am grateful for the history I have with him.
“His impact on me and my family is something I don’t have enough time to talk about.”
Williams added that his best piece of advice from Popovich is to never doubt himself.
“I think one time I said something in the media that was pretty self-deprecating about myself. He called me and said, ‘Don’t you ever do that again,’” Williams said. “He said that I was way better than that and that I didn’t need to do that. It was a really good piece of advice. I was trying to do something, but it probably didn’t come off the right way. He was a compass for me. He told me to ‘just coach your team. You’re doing a good job.’”
Here are live updates you can watch for the Suns and the Spurs.
— The Suns have six players who have double-digit points: Booker (27), Paul (22), Ayton (19), Durant (18), Craig (15) and backup center Bismack Biyombo (10).
— The Suns’ 31-point deficit from the first half was cut down to nine (83-74) with a shot from Spurs guard Tre Jones with 6:03 left in the quarter.
Now, Phoenix leads 92-76. Booker has 10 points in the period and a game-high 26.
Devin Booker up to 26 points... pic.twitter.com/8X7hTSeGTe— Trevor Booth (@TrevorMBooth) April 5, 2023
HALFTIME: #Suns 69— Trevor Booth (@TrevorMBooth) April 5, 2023
Phoenix was outscored 21-8 at the end of the half but won the quarter, 27-26.
Leaders: Paul, 18 points.
Booker, 16 points.
Ayton, 11 points.
The #Suns have doubled up the Spurs and lead 61-30 with 5:33 left in the second quarter.— Trevor Booth (@TrevorMBooth) April 5, 2023
Phoenix is shooting 24-of-39 (61 percent). Paul (18 points), Booker (14) and Durant (10) leading the way.
Chris Paul is yet to miss a shot... 16 points. pic.twitter.com/zLx7KDI5gr— Trevor Booth (@TrevorMBooth) April 5, 2023
Pretty cool Al McCoy is doing play-by-play with Eddie Johnson and Kevin Ray throughout the second quarter. #Suns— Trevor Booth (@TrevorMBooth) April 5, 2023