Suns Game of the Decade

With the sun setting on another decade of NBA basketball, I decided to take a look back at the best of the best from the past ten seasons.

However, when you’ve got a two-time MVP in Steve Nash choosing a “Player of the Decade” just doesn’t seem fair.

Meanwhile, when you’ve got a team renowned for its high-flying, high-scoring shenanigans… well, we don’t have enough interns to try and select a “Play of the Decade.”

But “Game of the Decade” is definitely doable and so, well, I did. [Read more...]

Day in the Life of a GM: Legal, Financial & Downtime



Kerr says understanding the CBA is integral to a team’s success.
(Barry Gossage/NBAE/Getty Images)

Since the advent of fantasy basketball, everybody believes that they can be a GM. Most fans have visions of a man maniacally working deals on the phone and using a staff of MIT grads to crack stats. So in order to dispel all (most) the myths, Suns President of Basketball Operations and GM Steve Kerr told Suns.com what his days are like. [Read more...]

Above Average

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Christian Petersen/NBAE/Getty

Amar’e Stoudemire was afire early and Channing Frye was a four-alarm blaze later, and the Suns had very little problem scorching a Celtic team that was minus two of its best players and playing its fourth road game in six nights.

[Read more...]

Suns Beat Lakers at Home

(Barry Gossage/NBAE/Getty Images)

(Barry Gossage/NBAE/Getty Images)

Hard to single out any one player, or even one phase for the coveted GGBA (Gilmartin Game Ball Award)!

For one thing, if ever there was a “team” victory, this was it. And as individuals go, you have to consider Amar’e’s 26 points, or Steve Nash’s 13 assists and second half recovery of his shooting eye, or Jared Dudley’s timely threes, or the entire bench for outscoring its Laker counterpart 52-31, and out-rebounding it 15-8, or maybe even Robin Lopez, who provided so much needed muscle in his most productive outing of the season.

And I haven’t even mentioned the best defense the Suns have played this year; this after Coach Alvin called them out publicly for malfeasance and even more damning, nonfeasance. With successful attitude treatments like this, Coach could moonlight as a $300-an-hour shrink.

However, upon further review, I have decided to go with none of the above and go with Channing Frye, who not only scored 10 of his 14 points in the third period with the game still very much in doubt, but more surprisingly (okay, astonishingly) hauled down 11 rebounds and turned in the single most pivotal defensive play of the game.

The Lakers had just whittled a 19-point lead down to 12 and Kobe Bryant was flying to the hoop for a breakaway that would cut it to ten or even nine just as the period ended, only to have Frye deliver a sensational block.

The Lakers would never get that close again. In fact, by the middle of the fourth period the lead was back to 19 again and the Suns were coasting to a victory that, for the nonce at least, restored some of the early-season swagger that had turned to stagger this month.

If there was a message here for the Suns, and I’m not sure you can deliver messages even to yourself in December, it is that they team has to play this hard to succeed, no matter who the opponent. And when it doesn’t it’s a middle of the pack team.

So maybe there was a double bonus here, a victory over the mighty Lakers and a wakeup call that may keep them from lapsing into prolonged snoozes on defense.

And while it may not mean too much down the road, it’s worth noting that the Lakers’ cloak of invincibility needs a little mending. They were thrashed at home by the Cavs on Christmas Day, needed double overtime and a little luck to beat the Kings, and frankly looked very ordinary indeed here Monday night. Granted, they were without Ron Artest, and they are still clearly the class of the West, but I’m just sayin’ …

The bottom line: At the very least this victory should quiet growing fears the Suns’ 14-3 sprint out of the gate was totally misleading, and re-establish the reality it was only a tad misleading.

Suns Get Easy Win on Christmas

(Barry Gossage/NBAE/Getty Images)

(Barry Gossage/NBAE/Getty Images)

Not necessary to much about this one except to wish everybody in blogville a Merry Christmas, congratulate Jared Dudley on his Comeback Of The Week award, and salute Grant Hill on the Shot Of The Decade (long division).

Dudley, who managed zero points in 30 minutes Wednesday against the Cavaliers, scored 18 in just 24 minutes to celebrate the holiday with a flourish, and Hill banked in a buzzer-beating 53-footer to end the first half.

Other than that, it was pretty much business as usual for the Suns against the Clippers, with Amare Stoudemire scoring 24 points and Jason Richardson adding 18 as the Suns built a lead that stretched to 33 points at its peak.

We won’t know for sure until Monday when the Lakers come calling if the Suns have snapped out of their recent shooting slump or this was just the Clippers being the Clippers, but in any case, they shot 54 percent from the field and hit half of their 24 threes. (Yes, yes. I know the Suns are at Golden State tomorrow night, but like I said, we won’t know for sure until Monday).

One thing we do know for sure is it’s great to have Leandro Barbosa back in action. After he went down with an ankle injury the Suns went into a 4-8 tailspin, and while he wasn’t particularly needed for this one he showed flashes of his old form and seems ready to resume his vital role as the team’s accelerator.

The bottom line: This one showed up at just the right time on a schedule that has done the Suns few favors in the early going.

Day in the Life of a GM: Scouting, On the Road & Stats



Kerr spends a lot of time scouting opposing teams and players such as the Warriors’ Stephen Curry.
(Rocky Widner/NBAE/Getty Images)

Since the advent of fantasy basketball, everybody believes that they can be a GM. Most fans have visions of a man maniacally working deals on the phone and using a staff of MIT grads to crack stats. So in order to dispel all (most) the myths, Suns President of Basketball Operations and GM Steve Kerr told Suns.com what his days are like. [Read more...]

Day in the Life of a GM: Communication



When Kerr became a GM, he sought out the advice of Gregg Popovich.
(D. Clarke Evans/NBAE/Getty Images)

Since the advent of fantasy basketball, everybody believes that they can be a GM. Most fans have visions of a man maniacally working deals on the phone and using a staff of MIT grads to crack stats. So in order to dispel all (most) the myths, Suns President of Basketball Operations and GM Steve Kerr told Suns.com what his days are like. [Read more...]

Day in the Life of a GM: At the Office



Kerr and Gentry are always bouncing ideas off each other.
(Barry Gossage/NBAE/Getty Images)

Since the advent of fantasy basketball, everybody believes that they can be a GM. Most fans have visions of a man maniacally working deals on the phone and using a staff of MIT grads to crack stats. So in order to dispel all (most) the myths, Suns President of Basketball Operations and GM Steve Kerr told Suns.com what his days are like. [Read more...]

Suns Don't Let Up in Win Against Wizards

(Barry Gossage/NBAE/Getty Images)

(Barry Gossage/NBAE/Getty Images)

Now was that SO hard? To hit the accelerator instead of the break when you to plus 15, I mean?

The Suns haven’t blown many games this year, but of late they had fallen into the potentially dangerous habit of blowing most or all of double-digit leads – 19 of 20 before rallying to beat the Spurs here and all of a 15-point lead and then some at Portland being the last two cases in point.

But tonight the offense didn’t let up until it hit plus 33 and coasted home with reserves playing out the string in a 121-95 victory that pushed their home court record to a perfect 10 this year and stretched their home winning streak over a two-season span to 18 games. [Read more...]

Hey! Another Road Trip

See this image? After the one-game jaunt to Portland for Thursday's contest, Suns road trips will seem like a distant memory... at least until after the December 25 game.

For a team that obviously loves playing at home, the Suns have certainly spent enough time away from there this season.

Expect that trend to change… well, after yet one more road trip, anyway.

[Read more...]