Thanks to a 12-26 record, the Phoenix Suns are now in the basement of the Western Conference along with the Dallas Mavericks and Minnesota Timberwolves.
The Phoenix Suns were defeated by the defending-champion Cleveland Cavaliers on Sunday, 120-116.
The Suns struggled in the first half, but came alive in the final 24 minutes of play. A strong third quarter in which they outscored the Cavs by 13 points made it a three point game heading into the third quarter. Earl Watson’s Suns played well in the fourth quarter, but ultimately came up short against LeBron James and Co.
The loss snapped the Suns’ two-game win-streak, while the Cavs made it two-straight wins of their own, and five dubs in six games.
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The 12-26 Suns surprisingly made it a game against the best team in the Eastern Conference. Cleveland now sits at 28-8, and just recently acquired a lethal shooter in Kyle Korver. As if they needed to get any more dangerous than they already are.
Cleveland’s big-three made up of Kyrie Irvin, Kevin Love, and James exploded tonight for a combined 80 points. Love also collected 10 rebounds, making it his 22nd double-double of the season.
For the Suns, it was the collective play from the starting five that lead the second-half charge against the Cavaliers. Eric Bledsoe was the leading scorer with 31, and Devin Booker followed with 28. It was the usual suspects, but they had some help tonight. All starters scored in the double-digits, and P.J. Tucker chipped in with 10 of his own off the bench.
Head coach Earl Watson credited his young squad with their hard-nosed play against one of basketball’s best teams despite the loss. “I think our team did a great job in the second half coming out and creating a type of style of basketball defensively that created an edge. They gave us transition and it was fun to watch,” Watson said in his post-game presser.
Phoenix will have the next few nights off, but will be back in action on Thursday against the Dallas Mavericks. The two teams will be playing in one of the NBA’s two games hosted in Mexico City.