(D. Clarke Evans/NBAE/Getty Images)

The Indiana Pacers had the Phoenix Suns in their clutches for the first 2.5 quarters on Wednesday night.  Then the Suns decided that they were going to stop taking as many three-point shots as they did in the first half and also ratcheted up the defense.  That combination surprised the Pacers so much they couldn’t keep their lead and when the Suns finally went ahead, they didn’t give it up again.

But despite the big comeback the Suns had in the game, the main story on Wednesday night was Amar’e Stoudemire.  Because of the game he had, this “By the Numbers” is dedicated to STAT.

  • 51 – a career-high for Amar’e Stoudemire…if the number of points the Indiana scoreboard had him scoring at the end of the game had been correct. 
  • 49 – the actual number of points Amar’e scored in the game according to Eddie Johnson and Amar’e Stoudemire in a post-game interview (and the official box score); 49 is one off of his career high
  • 11 – number of rebounds in the game by Amar’e; the game high
  • 6 – number of assists in the game by STAT; tied for the game high
  • 5 – number of steals in the game by Stoudemire; the game high
  • 2 – number of blocks by the Suns power forward
  • 3 – number of fouls by Amar’e

Overall, I would say Stoudemire saved the game for the Suns.  He even got the Pacers so riled up at the end of the game that after a vicious dunk on Jeff Foster, point guard Travis Diener – who gives up 9 inches and 75 pounds to STAT – shoved Amar’e to the floor.  But unlike what usually happened in the past when a game started to get physical, the Suns got more aggresive and continued to pound the Pacers in the last few minutes of the game.

The Suns now have a 4-1 record, are tied with New Orleans, LA and and Utah for first place in the Western Conference and have two more East coast games before they head home.

What did you think of the game?