Arron Afflalo saw his Nuggets drop one to the Warriors 112-97. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-US PRESSWIRE

Living here in Warriors country and having several Warriors fan friends, I keep tabs on the team over at Golden State of Mind. Virtually every front page piece over there for the last few weeks has centered around the idea of tanking. While the Suns would stand to possibly gain a spot or two in the draft by losing more games down the stretch, the Warriors will lose their first rounder altogether if it falls outside of the top 7 after the draft lottery due to a disastrous trade for Marcus Williams in 2008.

It's easy to understand why their fans are enthusiastically embracing the tanking strategy. Would have been nice if they had been tanking when they played the Suns, as they beat us two out of three times after the Suns swept them last season, but at least the Warriors did us a solid by knocking off the Nuggets last night, and have a chance to help us more since they play them again tomorrow.

The Suns currently sit at one game behind the Nuggets' 8th spot, but the Nuggets would hold the tie-breaker since they have already beaten the Suns twice. The Mavericks slipped to 7th after their loss to the Grizzlies, and the Suns are only a game-and-a-half behind them.

Golden State Warriors 112 Denver Nuggets 97

Golden State of Mind - Tank in danger: We play these Nuggets again on Monday

David Lee
On Continuing To Compete:
"I've been saying we are going to continue to play hard until the final game is over. We have a team that gets along well, a team that has great chemistry and we are going to continue to scrap. We are under-manned right now, we love to going out there and competing and we are going to continue to do that until the last game."

On Team's Balanced Scoring:
"They were helping out a lot on me especially in the second half. I don't think I attempted a shot in the third quarter. Guys picked it up for me. Klay (Thompson) hit some shots, (Brandon) Rush hit some shots and I think Dom (Dominic McGuire) played an unbelievable game tonight on both ends like usual. It was an all-around game tonight and I was really really happy with the way the team played."

Memphis Grizzlies 94 Dallas Mavericks 89

Mavs Moneyball - Dallas Mavericks @ Memphis Grizzlies Post Game 57 Quotes "Frustrating in all aspects"

Dirk Nowitzki:

(On the Standings) "We're now eighth or ninth [ed. note: actually 7th], so we've got to fight. We've got to battle and win some games."

(On the Mavs) "We've all got to play well, I think that’s obvious if we want to do something to make the playoffs or do some damage in the playoffs. We all have to play at a high level. That’s what we did last year, we picked up some momentum, had everybody play well, defense and rebound. On offense, everybody shared the ball and played well together.

(On how to work The Farm - Alltogethernow) "That’s the only way we’re going to be able to do it this year. It’s not going to be one guy, it’s not going to be two guys. If we want to win, ultimately we’ve go to do it together and have everyone play at a high level. That’s the only way."

(On Lamar Odom's perfomance) "I'm done talking about that."

Milwaukee Bucks 116 Portland Trail Blazers 94

Blazers Edge - RECAP: Milwaukee Bucks 116, Portland Trail Blazers 94

The Portland Trail Blazers kept up with the high-scoring Bucks for a while, but ran out of energy when Milwaukee got defensive in the second half, eventually losing by a non-representative 22 points. As a fan, this is just one of those losses that you shrug and accept after a big win last night, and move on to the next game.


Western Conference Standings

Standings_040812_medium


PHOENIX — Last night in Denver the Suns gave away a game that Steve Nash described as “heartbreaking.” He proceeded to tweet that he’s going to count to 10 presumably to try to get over...

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shannon needs a nickname ... thoughts?

Tonight it was clear that the Suns would need help from the 2nd unit and beyond in order to win a game against Kobe Bryant and the Lakers. Of course, Bryant called in with a lil boo-boo to his shin, so in theory, things would get easier in the Suns' quest to climb the WC playoff charts. But beating the Lakers without Bryant wasn't a given by any means. I would argue it may even be more difficult, intensity being the fleeting condition it often is.

But the Suns, bolstered by 24 points from Shannon Brown and 23 from Michael Redd, cruised by the Lakers, 125-105.

The Suns stumbled out of the gates in the first, looking like the tired club they were after a night in Denver Friday. Phoenix shot 40% from the field, while Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol combined for 18 and 13, while the Suns' Dudley, Frye, and Shannon Brown combined for 3-13 from the field.

The Suns' bench, led by Michael Redd and Bassy Telfair, righted the ship in the second, erasing a nine-point Laker lead. With Los Angeles up, 40-35, Redd reeled off 10 straight Suns points. Telfair added a 3-pointer, and the Suns took the lead and never let the Lakers back in the game.

The third quarter belonged to ex-Laker Shannon Brown, who went totally HAM -- 20 points as the Lakers faded for good.

WORTH BULLETING

  • The Suns committed 3 turnovers tonight, the fewest in 44 YEARS (that's the history of the franchise). The previous franchise low was 5 set on 1/17/95 vs. the Nuggets.
  • 125 points was a Suns season high, and the most in a regulation game vs. the Lakers since 2005.
  • 38 points in the 2nd quarter was yet another season best for the Suns.
  • The Suns are now a season best 2 games over .500, improving from 7 games under .500 -- the largest improvement of any NBA team this season.

FURTHER THOUGHTS ...

A good, needed and expected win tonight for the Suns playing against a Laker club without Kobe Bryant. The bench was huge, and while I mentioned the obvious big contributors, I want to toss out a shout to the rook, Markieff Morris, who chipped in 13 points, 5 rebounds, 2 blocks, a 3-pointer and a technical foul. For those of you who didn't see it, Keef stuck up for J-Chill, who got tied up with (I'm chuckling as I write this ... ) Metta World Artest. So Chill and Artest get tied up after the whistle, Chill tried to play nice, but um, Artest, was being his old self, prompting Keef to step in. The two barked at one another and picked up offsetting T's ...The scene gave me chills. There's no telling how good Morris will be, but one thing is for sure in my mind, he will be a tough MF'R for years to come.

It is disturbing how many Lakers jersies one sees near and around U.S. Airways Center. And while I have my theories as to why AZ has so many Laker fans that make themselves present in broad daylight, the bottom line is it matters little, because it is what it is, obnoxious and lame, which is how these fans act at a Suns game.

The Suns are now 1 (one) game back from Denver, who lost to Golden State, and 1.5 back from DALLAS, yeah world champion Dallas, who also lost.

Next up for Los Suns:

Minny, Memphis, the Fighting Dragices and then the Spurs ...

Poll
Should the Suns Re-Sign Shannon Brown This Summer

  330 votes | Results


Apr. 7, 2012; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Phoenix Suns guard (22) Michael Redd drives to the basket against Los Angeles Lakers forward (9) Matt Barnes in the first half at the US Airways Center. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE

Most of us realized the Suns starters would need a boost from the bench tonight. Michael Redd certainly realized it. Nobody reminded Shannon Brown he played last night.

Redd led the Suns back from an 8 point second quarter deficit, exploding for 17 2nd quarter points, and leading the Suns to 38 2nd quarter points.

The Suns took a 62-57 lead over the Lakers at the half, and never looked back, following their 37 point 2nd quarter effort with a 38 point 3rd quarter.

The Suns bragged 7 players in double figures, including 3 from the second unit, outscoring the Lakers pine by A LOT.

The Suns set a season high with 14 3-pointers made

The Suns set a franchise record giving away only 3 turnovers.





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