HOUSTON — The Phoenix Suns were playing on the second night of a back-to-back against a team that they really didn’t matchup well against. It seemed like a recipe for disaster and that’s exactly how it turned out, with the Suns losing 122-108.
Goran Dragic led the Suns (29-20) with 23 points, six rebounds, eight assists and three steals, but his All-Star worthy heroics were not nearly enough to carry Phoenix to a tough road victory. Gerald Greed scored 13 in his return to where he played high school basketball and Leandro Barbosa added 13 points, six rebounds and four assists off the bench.
Dwight Howard was a handful, as he led the Rockets (33-17) with 34 points, 14 rebounds, three steals and two blocks. Howard shot 11-for-17 from the field and 12-for-18 from the free-throw line. James Harden chipped in with 23 and Chandler Parsons and Terrence Jones each scored 19.
The Suns shot just 8-for-30 from the 3-point line, compared to the Rockets’ 11-for-16. The free-throw disparity was enormous as well, with the Suns making 16-of-21 and the Rockets making 33-of-42. If the Suns allow any opponent to shoot 54.9 percent from the field and 68.8 percent from the 3-point line, they’re going to lose.
Suns By The Numbers
14 — The Suns biggest deficit of the night, which is surprising considering the Rockets’ percentages.
12 — Nobody had more than six total rebounds, but the Suns had 12 offensive rebounds as a team.
27 — The Suns outscored the Rockets bench by 27 points (46-19).
Dragic continued his torrid pace with his fifth consecutive game of more than 20 points scored. He added six rebounds, eight assists and three steals, which are all above his season averages. He’s really stepped up his game without Eric Bledsoe in the lineup and deserves every bit of recognition he receives.
Miles Plumlee and Alex Len couldn’t have liked this matchup on paper, knowing that Dwight Howard was going to have his way with them. He did just that. Plumlee scored five points with six rebounds in just 25:56 and Len scored two points with one rebound in 14:30. They each had three fouls and were complete non-factors.
The Suns get a break for two days, before hosting the Golden State Warriors on Saturday, February 8th from US Airways Center in Phoenix, Arizona.