Just because your Suns dropped a tough one 107-97 to the Oklahoma City Thunder in Tulsa, that doesn’t mean there weren’t some bright spots and entertaining moments. Here are three oddservations from the game.
1) Bench Mobbed
Sure, Alvin Gentry’s team lost to the Thunder but there was a reason for it. His starters spent less time on the court than Amanda Bynes has spent in one recently. Goran Dragic, Luis Scola, Marcin Gortat, Jared Dudley and Michael Beasley spent a combined 56 minutes on the floor or roughly 11 minutes each. That meant the bench got their first real chance to prove themselves in the fourth preseason game and they took advantage of it.
As a unit, the bench combined for 77 of the team’s 97 points. Unfamiliar names to Suns fans like Luke Zeller, Solomon Jones and Diante Garrett made impacts. Zeller, a lengthy big man with outside range, scored 8 points and grabbed 4 rebounds. Jones, an athletic 6-10 low post player, had an impressive 10 points and 10 rebounds (six of which were offensive rebounds) and Diante Garrett, the rookie point guard, added in 7 points and 5 assists of his own. There was another member of the bench that impressed as well …
2) P.J. Tucker is like a bottle of water in July. Just one of those things the people of Phoenix love
Tucker is just the type of player who Suns fans, and sports fans in the Valley in general, fall in love with. Like Elliot Perry, Louis Amundson and Joe Kleine before him, he has the ability to do the little things. Like an NBA version of Jeff Foxworthy, he’s a blue collar player who is willing to do anything to please the crowd.
Against the Thunder, he had 11 points and 5 rebounds in workman fashion. He hustled his way to 4-of-6 shooting in 29 minutes of play. That is exactly the type of numbers and effort that will have fans chanting “Tuuuck” at US Airways Center in no time.
3) Wild Wild Wes
Sometimes a change of scenery is all that a person needs. It’s similar to Tom Hanks after Bosom Buddies or any woman after she dates Billy Bob Thorton (see: Jolie, Angelina). That change can launch a person’s career and make their past speedbumps seem like a distant memory. If preseason is any indication, being traded to Phoenix could be that moment for Wesley Johnson.
The former No. 4 overall pick seemed rejuvenated this preseason and Friday’s game was no exception. The athletic swingman nailed 3-of-5 three pointers on his way to a team high 15 points. He’s now averaging 13.7 points in four preseason games.
Tweet of the Night:
— Jessica Aguilar (@J_Ag) October 20, 2012