I live in Maryland now, but I'm just not feeling the Baltimore Ravens. I guess I'm just an NFC guy (and National League in baseball) so I've got to go with the Niners. Who you got?

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* Our awesome Niners blog, Niners Nation!

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Have fun, and drink responsibly today and every day.

Super Bowl prediction:

  16 votes | Results


Game Story

The Suns got off to a solid start offensively, which was good considering they didn't play any defense at all in the opening minutes. The Warriors would take a lead and then the Suns would answer. However, the Suns' defensive effort picked up and shots continued to fall as the half wen on, and the Suns were able to build up a lead.

Micheal Beasley took the coaching staff's words to heart and came out firing. Thankfully, the shots were falling for him and he finished the first half with a game-high 15 points on 7-14 shooting. Most of his shots were jumpers, but he did take it to the basket and finished one time and also converted a sick alley-oop from Goran Dragic.

Luis Scola and Marcin Gortat controlled the glass with nine and eight boards respectively, and the Suns as a team held a 27-24 edge. Field goals were pretty even, but it was the free-throw line that made the difference for the Suns as they hit 9-12 at the stripe (including 4-4 by Dragic) compared to just 4-7 for the Warriors.

The result was a 52-48 lead for the Suns at the break.

However, the Suns' offense dried up in the third quarter, and a 13-0 run by the Warriors gave Golden State a lead. The Suns fought back for a little while, but the Warriors were just too much. Beasley went 0-4 in the period, and nobody else could hit a shot either. A 22-33 third quarter put the Suns down seven at the end of the period, and the Warriors continued to roll in the fourth to the tune of a 19-32 frame.

Micheal Beasley finished with 24 points to lead the Suns, but after a decent first half he went 3-9 in the second to finish 10-23 from the field. P.J. Tucker was solid with 12 points on seven shots, seven rebounds an three assists. Jared Dudley had 16 points on 5-9 shooting, but only played 27 minutes. Goran Dragic was the only other Sun in double figures with 13 points an seven assists, but he only shot 3-10.

Conversely, all five starters for the Warriors hit double figures in points, led by 29 and eight assists from Stephen Curry in his first game back after spraining his ankle again.

Lots O' Thoughts

  • Kendall Marshall continues to get some burn, and he didn't look bad at all tonight. He finished with two points on a great drive and finish, three assists and one steal, but also had two turnovers in 19 minutes. He's a work in progress, but he does appear to be improving.
  • The Suns actually held their own on the boards led by Luis Scola's 14. But considering the Suns missed 10 more shots than the Warriors, only being +1 (15-14) on the offensive glass isn't enough.
  • The Warriors are a ridiculously good jump-shooting team. Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Harrison Barnes and Jarrett Jack are all very good shooters.
  • Continuing on that thought, the Warriors' offense is a lot of fun to watch. They use so many screen and get so many open looks, and the ball movement is amazing. Look at these assist numbers: eight for Curry, seven for Jack, seven for Thompson and seven for Lee. 34 assists as a team. In the second half, the Warriors continued to work the ball around and run their offense, while the Suns settled for one-on-one play. The Warriors finished with a 32-22 edge in assists, which is a big reason the Warriors scored at will an the Suns couldn't buy a bucket.
  • Most of the statistical categories were pretty close, and the Suns actually held a slight edge in free throws, rebounds and turnovers. But the Warriors dominated in two key areas: 3-point shooting and points in the paint. The Warriors shot a respectable 9-19 from deep compared to 5-15 for the Suns, an the Warriors dropped 66 points in the paint compared to 44 for the Suns. The Warriors got much easier an more efficient looks, and they converted them.
  • Diante Garrett was freed! He only got two minutes of garbage time at the end, and made the most of it with two points and two rebounds. #FreeGarrettMore

The Suns head to Memphis on Wednesday for yet another tough road game.Suns Score

The Phoenix Suns were in prime position to snag their first significant road victory of the season against a Western Conference foe Saturday night. But as was the case in previous losses against the...

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Important Numbers

Tip-off is set for 7:30 PST, 8:30 AZ time, 9:30 CST and 10:30 EST (again, sorry my international friends but you'll have to figure it out for yourselves). No national TV for this one so you'll have to fin some way to watch it yourself.

Golden State is 29-17 and sitting in fifth place in the Western Conference standings, while the Suns are way down in 14th place at 16-31. However, the Suns are currently playing .500 ball under interim head coach Lindsey Hunter.

The Warriors are the top 3-point shooting team in the NBA at 39.3%, while the Suns are second to last in 3-point defense, allowing opponents to shoot 38.3%. This could get messy.

However, if you take out the two games against Dallas, the Suns are giving up just 94.5 points per game and 44.9% shooting since Hunter took over (tip o' the cap to Paul Coro's Orange Slices and Suns stat man Vince Kozar for this one).

Injury Update

Warriors point guard and All-Star snub Stephen Curry is questionable for tonight with an ankle injury. Curry sat out the Warriors' last game and with his history, I'd be surprised if Mark Jackson didn't let him take his time coming back. With the way Klay Thompson and Jarrett Jack are playing, they don't even need him to beat a lot of teams (including the Sun unfortunately).

For the Suns, Jermaine O'Neal is the only injury to report. I haven't seen any updates about his heart and he sat out last night's game, so I'm guessing he won't play again tonight. O'Neal's absence has opened up more minutes at the power forward spot for Michael Beasley.

Key Players

Even without Curry, the Warriors feature one of the best inside-outside games in the league with David Lee on the interior and Klay Thompson outside. Lee is leading the NBA in double-doubles, and the match-up between he and Luis Scola will be one of the keys to the game.

Klay Thompson has been on fire recently and has stepped it up even more without Curry. Thompson is averaging 21.9 points per game in his last nine, and scored a total of 59 points in the last two with Curry sitting out. P.J. Tucker and/or Jared Dudley are going to have their hands full and are going to have to fight through plenty of screens.

Andrew Bogut is back for the Warriors, and although his minutes are being limited, he's still a defensive force for the Warriors in the 20 or so minutes he's on the court. Jarrett Jack is one of the best back-up point guards in the NBA, and even if Curry sits out Goran Dragic will have his hands full.

The last time these two teams played was way back on opening night, and the Suns fell in a close one, 87-85. The Suns are on the second game of a back-to-back after falling to Dallas last night, so they're going to have to play lights out to have any chance in this one. I don't like the Suns' chances in a close game late.

PHOENIX – The Phoenix Suns are learning how to go for their opponents’ throats. Call it one of many lessons to learn as Lindsey Hunter attempts to teach a team without much room for error, even...

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