A Look at the 2012-13 Suns Schedule

Much of a team’s record during any given NBA season can be attributed to the players, coaches and trainers.  But because the difference between a lottery pick and a great playoff seed has been just a few games over the past few seasons, some of the credit (or blame) for where a team ends up in the standings could probably go to a team’s schedule as well.  If a team gets a long stint at home toward the end of a season when the players are tired, or has an especially long road trip at the very beginning of the season, it could help or hurt them. [Read more...]

The Back-to-Back Breakdown

(Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE/Getty Images)

Tonight’s Phoenix Suns game against the Utah Jazz represents the 15th time this season the team has played in back-to-back games.  With the Jazz only 1/2 game ahead of Phoenix for home court advantage in the playoffs, the history of the back-to-backs this season could indicate how well the team will do.  [Read more...]

Phoenix Suns Week in Numbers

(Barry Gossage/NBAE/Getty Images)

A look back at some trends for the Suns over the past week (February 23 through March 1):

  1. The Suns outscored their opponents 546 to 507.
  2. The win against the Nuggets capped a stretch of five games in seven days.  They won four of those games and their one loss was by 3 points.
  3. Phoenix scored the least number of cumulative points in the 4th quarter over the past week.  They averaged 23.8 points in the 4th quarter as opposed to at least 27.2 in each of the other three quarters.  They scored 17 points twice in that stretch.
  4. Amar’e Stoudemire has average 26.4 points over the past week.  Steve Nash averaged 11.25 assists over 4 games – he didn’t play in the first game against the Thunder.
  5. The Suns bench averaged 26 points.  The bench of the opponents averaged 33.6 points.  This number is skewed by the Spurs whose bench scored 55 points against the Suns.  But the three players on the bench who scored were Richard Jefferson, Manu Ginobili and DeJuan Blair.  The Spurs starting five only scored 58.

One more number:

  1. Lori Ann was wondering how the Suns did when the Suns scored at least 25 points in each quarter and how the team did when at least 25 points were scored in the first quarter.  So I ran some numbers.  The Suns are a perfect 11-0 when they score 25+ points in each quarter.  When they score at least 25 points in the 1st quarter, the Suns are 34-15 – a 69% winning percentage.  So if you’re looking to practically guarantee the Suns a win, root for them to score at least 25 points a quarter.

Have a numbers question yourself?  E-mail me at blog@suns.com and I’ll try to track down the answer.

Catching Up with Joe Gilmartin

You’ve seen Joe Gilmartin’s writing on Suns.com – now read what someone wrote about him!  Fanster.com‘s Ben York caught up with Joe a few days ago and asked him about the Suns’ past and present.  Read Ben’s entire interview and when you’re finished there, be sure to check out the rest of Fanster.com’s Suns offerings.

Suns Find Groove Against Warriors

(Jed Jacobsohn/NBAE/Getty Images)

(Jed Jacobsohn/NBAE/Getty Images)

The Suns don’t have control over their own playoff destiny at this point in the season.  But they did do their part on Sunday night by scoring the most points by an NBA team this season.  And more importantly by beating the Warriors, 154-130.

Jason Richardson and Matt Barnes decided to beat up on their old team by scoring 51 combined points – over 33 percent of the teams total points.  Shaquille O’Neal and Leandro Barbosa add another 47 points to the team’s total.  In fact, every player who stepped on the court for the Suns scored except for Stromile Swift.

With such a high scoring game, one would think that Steve Nash would have the team high in assists.  But that honor went to Matt Barnes, who had a quarter of the team’s total assists.  Nash, however, wasn’t far behind with nine of his own dishes. [Read more...]

Run-and-Fun Continues Away From Home

(Noah Graham/NBAE/Getty Images)

(Noah Graham/NBAE/Getty Images)

For those fans (myself included) who wondered whether the Phoenix Suns would be able to keep up their winning ways with their new coach, Wednesday night’s game was a good test.  Phoenix wouldn’t be playing in front of their home crowd, the newness of the coach had worn off a bit and the players were tired from the game the night before.

And for the first three quarters, it looked as if the Clippers might have a chance.  They scored 19 more points than they did the night before.  But they let the Suns score 2 more points than they did in the previous game.  The final score was 142-119, advantage Suns. [Read more...]

Spy in the Skybox: Sunday Night Edition

skybox_mast

It’s finally the day we’ve all been waiting for.  There has been a lot of build-up and tons of great stuff put out by Suns.com.  With 9 people roaming around Phoenix and reporting everything they’ve experienced on Suns.com, you can check out what was happening at All-Star Weekend even if you weren’t able to attend yourself.  But everything that we’ve done during the past week was to prepare for tonight’s game.  For three hours, you’ll be able to watch arguably the best basketball players in the world play together on one court.  For basketball fans, there isn’t much better than this.  

Check back throughout the evening for live updates on the game and events in the arena that you may not see on TV.
[Read more...]

Spy in the Skybox: Saturday Night Edition

skybox_lead_allstar

It’s time for All-Star Saturday Night!  And Suns.com’s Dan Hilton (and possibly some special guests from other Suns.com crew members located throughout the building) will be providing live coverage of the event from high above the rafters at the US Airways Center.  Check back throughout the event to get information you won’t see anywhere else on the web! [Read more...]

Spy in the All-Star Skybox: Rookie Challenge Edition

skybox_mast

Dan Hilton will be following the Rookie Challenge and Youth Jam live during the first half on Friday night.  Check back throughout the game for insights you won’t get anywhere else!

8:02 pm – The rookies are up by only three at halftime after Green made an amazing halfcourt shot at the buzzer.  It’s been a very entertaining game.  I think it goes to show what type of players the NBA has to look forward to.  This is a great showcase to see what these guys can do when the veterans aren’t around.  And they should only get better as they get more time in the league.   

[Read more...]

Spy in the Skybox: Friday Morning Edition

skybox_mast

I’m back in the Skybox for most of Friday and there is a lot of activity going on in the arena today.  

  • Run-throughs for the Haier Shooting Stars competition started at 9:00am.  Again, there are stand-ins for every person who will be on the court during the real thing on Saturday night.  For the Shooting Stars competition, that means there are 12 guys on the stage to go through the introductions.  Then they actually get to go through an actual competition.  The only thing I hope is that the actual competition goes better on Saturday than it is going in rehearsals.  Most of the guys look like they’ve played basketball before but that half-court shot must be a killer.  They finally changed the rules for the stand-ins so they would only take one shot from each location other than half-court.  It was just taking too long!
  • After the Shooting Stars rehearsal, they did the same thing for the skills and dunk contests.  This was a little easier for the four participants.  The hardest thing for them (and it always seems like for the real players as well) was the bounce pass through the vertical hoop.  The ball seems to go through and then bounces out.
  • One of the guys doing the skills contest thought he would add a little flair at the end when he needed to make a lay-up and instead tried to dunk the ball.  Unfortunately for him, his legs were a little more tired than he anticipated and the ball hit off the front of the rim.  He quickly attempted and made another lay-up and then was laughed at as he left the court.  The camera guys decided to help him out by continually showing his miss on the big screen.

The entire Suns.com crew is now heading to the All-Star Media Availability for the next 2 hours.  I expect we’ll have some fun stories from that experience.