Suns Season Ends

(Christian Petersen/NBAE/Getty Images)

The cognoscenti almost unanimously said it couldn’t be done, and in the end the Suns didn’t do it.

But to their considerable credit they kept the issue in doubt right down to the 53-second mark in the fourth period of Game Six when Kobe Bryant sealed their doom with a shot only he would think of taking, let alone make. [Read more...]

No Substitutions

It won’t show up on any stat sheet (in large part because it technically never happened), and while it may still be early in this series, mark down the halfway point of the second quarter in Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals as what could go down as the turning point in this series. [Read more...]

Nobody Told These Guys

Don’t they know these are the Lakers?

Don’t they know this is the best team in NBA history, with the best lineup of 2009-2010, with celebrities at courtside, with the heir to Michael Jordan, with unstoppable length and size and will and determination and championship experience? Don’t they know they got smashed in Game 1, gave Game 2 their best shot and got smashed in the fourth quarter, and allowed the Lakers to do whatever they wanted on offense? Don’t they know their an appetizer for a main course of Boston?

Nobody told these Phoenix Suns. [Read more...]

5 Thoughts Before Suns-Lakers Game 4

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Five thoughts entering Tuesday’s Game 4 of the Western Conference finals between the Suns and Lakers:

1. The Suns’ victory Sunday was impressive for several reasons. Mostly, they just needed a win. They also were finally rewarded for playing the type of solid defense they did in the first two games — but the Lakers simply could not miss. Also, the Suns’ bench was deeper than the Lakers’ all season, and all it took was a return home to prove it. [Read more...]

Five Thoughts on Suns-Lakers Game 2

Five thoughts from the Suns’ 124-112 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers in Game 2 of the Western Conference finals:

1. Jared Dudley is right. When it comes to playing the Lakers, the Suns need to institute some lessons taught by the Oklahoma City Thunder. That means realizing that the Lakers aren’t invincible. That means understanding that just because the Lakers play bigger doesn’t mean they have to score at will underneath the basket. Mostly, it means making this a series by doing what the Lakers have done — win your games at home. The Suns have two coming up, and now is the time to take it up a notch. “You saw what the Thunder did,” Dudley said after Game 2. “That’s our mindset.”
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A Web Guy on the Wall

When I got the news that I would be traveling with the team to LA to cover the Western Conference Finals I knew it would be hard work and no fun. Ok I don’t think my boss is reading this. Here’s a few fun stories from behind-the-scenes in LA…

8 Thoughts on Suns-Lakers Game 1

Eight thoughts from the Suns’ 128-107 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers in Game 1 of the Western Conference finals Monday:

1. For all the talk of Kobe Bryant and his 40 points, the game actually changed once Lamar Odom came off the Lakers bench. Until then, the Suns had been winning and doing a decent job of at least making the Lakers shoot from the outside. But Odom entered midway through the first quarter and the Suns immediately fell into an 18-4 landslide. [Read more...]

Cue The Imperial March

(Christian Petersen/NBAE/Getty Images)

And so, here we are.  Having defeated Darth Vader, we come face to face with the Emperor.

You can feel the contempt.  You can taste the air of superiority.  You can sense the arrogance.  You can hear them saying they can’t fail.  You can see them looking past our shoulders to Boston or Orlando.

Good grief, do I despise the Lakers. [Read more...]

Amico's Suns vs Lakers Matchup Breakdown

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A look at the position-by-position matchups in the Western Conference finals between the Suns and the Lakers:

Point Guard – Steve Nash vs. Derek Fisher

Nash and Fisher are two of the toughest and smartest guys in the league, veterans who always step up their play at this time of year. Obviously, Nash is the superior true point guard, and at this stage of the game, it would be surprising if Fisher put up much resistance. That said, Fisher will still try to frustrate Nash with gritty defense and maybe even a little flopping, but clearly, Fisher has lost a step (or two). Nash, meanwhile, is still as crafty as ever at the age of 36. Give an advantage to the Suns here. So much that you can expect the Lakers to occasionally Ron Artest or even Kobe Bryant on Nash from time to time. [Read more...]

Prediction: Suns In Six

Barry Gossage/NBAE/Getty

No, I’m not dusting off a line that made me infamous back in the day. I’m telling it like it’s going to be. Yes, I realize that the national media is almost unanimous in picking the Lakers (the only reason I say “almost” is the off chance I may have overlooked one or two pundits who didn’t). And that’s just one of the reasons I think the Suns will win this series.

[Read more...]