They say behind every great man is a great woman. In the NBA there should be a similar adage: Behind every great starting lineup is a great bench, at least if you hope to succeed.
The Suns have been the benefactor of just that over the last month of the season. Despite the slow start for the team and their bench, it’s come together as of late. As the bench has improved, so has the Suns record from 12-17 to 30-28.
They’ve been the Captain Planet of the league, which is (only fitting seeing as it’s NBA Green Week). The individual pieces to the Suns bench are respectable and can help a team, but when the five come together and work as one the results are impressive.
Case in point: in the last two games, while the Suns have coasted to two 20+ point victories, the bench outscored the Lakers and Timberwolves by a combined 160-79.
Over the last four weeks Markieff Morris has again found the early-season swagger that placed him in the conversation for NBA Rookie of the Year.
Michael Redd has rediscovered the scoring ability that made him a bigger name than “The Fonz” in Milwaukee. (The Suns shooting guard has had five straight games with 13 or more points.)
Sebastian Telfair has found the right environment to live up to the expectations that have followed him throughout his career.
When you throw in Robin Lopez’s aggressiveness and Josh Childress’ Swiss Army Knife-like willingness to do anything – not to mention their unbelievable hair – you’ve got quite a potent group.
With their great play as of late, the quintet deserves a nickname. Suns broadcaster Scott Williams has offered up the phrase “The Bench Mob,” but fans on social media have said that moniker belongs to the Chicago Bulls.
Others have suggested names like “The Sun Burners,” “Deep Purple” and “Orange Crush.”
While those are all quality options, here are a few others for your consideration.
How about the “Phoenix Stun,” or what about “Five Guys”? In an effort to pay homage to the early ‘90s what do you think of “Markieff Mor and the Fun Bunch”? How do you feel about calling them “Andy Dufresne” since they’re friends with Redd? Or what do you think of just simply referring to them as the “Mad Men,” because they score in bunches and provide viewers with some pretty intense drama?
Regardless of what you call them, one thing is clear about the Suns bench. If they keep backing up the starters the way they have lately the team will be playing well into May and there is only one thing you can call that. Great.
What nickname do you think should be given to the Suns bench?