"Relax, relax, relax, OK? Everybody just relax, OK?"
So said Alvin Gentry with under a minute left and the game getting hairy at 105-100 after the Suns led by as many as 16 in the second half. Jared Dudley responded by pulling down a big defensive rebound of a Courtney Lee miss and then nailing a game-clinching 3 with 36.2 seconds left to seal a huge win for the Suns.
I'm relaxed. How about you? The Suns brought home a critically important win over the Rockets with a 20 point, 15 rebound performance from Marcin Gortat, 18 points and 10 assists from Steve Nash, timely third quarter defense, and 19 points from Dudley, including that clutch 3 with the game on the line.
Former Sun Goran Dragic came up big again for Houston with 22 points and 7 assists, and Luis Scola scored 21 but it wasn't enough for the Rockets as they could not overcome a 30-16 third quarter from the Suns, and allowed Phoenix to climb right back into the playoff race, now down only one game for the eighth spot.
On a night when Grant Hill returned from injury and the Suns desperately needed a win, they rode a great all-around performance with six players scoring in double figures including two off the bench and worked the Rockets over in the third quarter, then held on during white knuckle time in the fourth with clutch play.
If this Suns team is going down, it won't be without a fight, and all fists were swinging tonight.
Jared Dudley with 13 points, Gortat with 10 and 9, Michael Redd with 8. Marcus Camby is killing it on the boards with a ridiculous 18, 6 offensive, but he's the only Rocket doing damage in rebounding. Their edge is only 25-23. I'm feeling a big second half from the Suns bench. A four point deficit is nothing.
We got this!!!
This is a huge one, Suns fans. Win and pull to within a game, lose and fall three out. Get your food and drinks ready, take anti-anxiety medication if needed, stick pins in your Luis Scola voodoo dolls, pray to whatever god you like, rub a lucky rabbit's foot, do whatever it takes.
WIN THIS, SUNS!!!