The Suns got off to a good start on the offensive end by shooting 11-20 (55%) from the field and 3-5 (60%) from three point range. A scary moment occurred when Tucker went up for a block and Gerald Wallace, who went to the locker room, hit the floor hard after incidental contact. Dudley led the way with eight points for the Suns, while Morris had a couple of nifty passes during his brief stint. Deron Williams led the way for the Nets (7 points) who stayed close through a 6-0 free throw advantage due to a foul discrepancy between the Suns (6) and the Nets (0). Score: Suns 25, Nets 21.
The Suns got an unexpected contribution in the second quarter from the guy on the side of the milk carton. We hadn't seen much of Shannon (doing anything meaningful) lately, but tonight he showed up and scored 11 in the period. The Suns used an 11-3 run to gain separation from the Nets with Dudley, Brown and Dragic leading the way. All three players were in double figures with Brown scoring 13, Dragic 10 and Dudley (3-3 from three) 11. Williams led Brooklyn with 12, as the Nets continued to stay close behind a 22-6 free throw advantage. Score: Suns 53, Nets 46.
Brooklyn used one 10-0 run and another 18-6 run to not only take the lead in the third quarter, but actually put some distance between themselves and the Suns. Brooklyn was 11-21 from the field, while Phoenix managed just 5-20. Dudley (16 points and 4-4 from three) tried to keep the Suns close, but Phoenix had another one of their patented meltdown quarters and were outscored 28-13. In addition, the Suns were plagued by foul trouble to multiple players. Score: Nets 74, Suns 66.
The Nets stretched the end of the third quarter into a 30-6 run. The route was on. Same old story.
Nets win 99-79.
Player of the Game:
Nobody in particular had a game that stood apart from the others, so I'm going to give a team game ball to the Nets for stultifying the Suns in the second half.
Comments of the Game:
Dudley really has expanded his game.
Robin Lopez has been posting similar per 36 stats to Brook Lopez
He's having a very good year, no doubt. Happens a lot when we get rid of guys... We don't maximize our talent at all, which is why Gentry needs to go.
Tucker is an amazing defender.
(Brown) He has all the tools for being a great defender, he just doesn't have the mentality.
I think it's his (Scola's) un-athleticism that allows him to be as effective as he is.
It seems like his defenders react instinctively and overplay when they realize too late that he hasn't actually moved much at all. Then he lays it in.
That Joe Johnson looks good.
Wish we had him.
Damn Goran, he (Williams) has one leg!
Go at him!!!
Same old story.
Suns cannot play for 48 minutes. Yet again collapsing in the 4th quarter. So depressing. This team has become a joke.
Shannon Brown graced us with his presence in the first half after a six game stretch (since his demotion from the starting lineup) where he only managed 5.2 points per game on 30.9% shooting. Brown, who came into the stretch averaging 13.2 points per game, had scored zero points twice since being eschewed to the bench. Coincidentally, Brown showed up big time in the first half (13 points) a game after Suns players suggested people on the team had "quit." Whatever the reason, it was nice to see the Cannon firing.... before he started misfiring in the second half.
Jared Dudley had another superb game. On another night permeated by embarrassing ineptitude, Jared was one of the only players worthy of receiving superlatives. He scored 18 points (4-4 from three point range) to go along with five rebounds and four assists.
The foul and free throw disparity. I'm not usually one to bitch about the officiating (says the guy who's always bitching about the officiating), but it didn't seem like the refs rewarded the Suns for being aggressive on defense the way I've seen that dynamic work at times. The Suns had their share of mental lapses and made unnecessary contact at times, but the whistles disrupted their ability to maintain their defensive intensity throughout the game. Then, the Suns were evidently discomfited by the calls and let it get in their head, showing a lack of equanimity and mental fortitude.
Brooklyn's court. It was actually an eyesore to the point that it detracted from my ability to enjoy the game. I feel sorry for their fans that have to put up with that sensory abuse on a regular basis. In a dueling pianos dynamic, the Suns wore hideous orange warm-ups that I wouldn't take if you gave them to me...
The second half. I'm growing weary of the Suns being on the receiving end of these savage beatings on an alarmingly routine basis. If I'm going to watch the rest of the games this year with a comfortably numb level of detachment the Suns are going to have to stop trying to act like they care during the pre and postgame comments and interviews. The record isn't just old or broke, it's antediluvian and has been obliterated into smithereens. Memo guys: "giving up" 30-6 runs isn't acceptable. Getting outscored 53-26 in the second half isn't acceptable. Speaking of "giving up", the Suns quit again. Hard.
The Suns have become one of the very worst teams in the NBA.