Indian Wells pregame

Indian Wells pregame

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Game Thread roll call:

Roll Call: suns champ, Jaxis, SunKing, AcucracK, East Bay Ray, Eutychus, rsavaj, KSJ49, Omaha Sun, phxuk: Ap, Bkj, SUNS PORTUGAL, Seth Pollack, Beavis 25, suns68, sonicking, Migonads, Turambar, The Solution, yanyanman2, dbacks25, Scott Howard, Diego Queiroz, PanamaSun, 8472species, hcblankscreen, vincent enrique, EricSun89, troglodytes, Lemmings, N8lol, Chafid, Dragic_is_Magic, 7footer

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It won't be a full moon, so the werewolves should be mere mortals tonight. Lets hope that doesn't stop the Suns from taking a bit outta that Maverick ass. Am I right?

Gentry confirmed that J-Rich won't play but he is listed on the official starting lineup thing they hand out. Gamesmanship or preseason whogivesaheckmanship?

I vote the later.

AG did say that Jared would likely get the start but he hadn't decided for sure as of an hour before tip when he talked to us. 

The Mavs are without both Dirk and The Jet. Acting Mavs coach Dwane Casey said that Tyson Chandler will get the start instead of Brendan Haywood just to see some different looks. Without Terry or Beaubois (broke foot), Barea will get a lot of time running point.

Gentry repeated what he said yesterday about being concerned with the high turnovers in the first two games and poor defense. While he was willing to excuse some of the turnovers as "getting to know each other" adjustment, he said there were far too many "unforced errors".

As for the Toronto disaster, AG said he didn't take too much from that, calling it a throw-away game.

Weather Report:

When I first got here and the Suns was shining on the court it was pretty warm. Now with the Sun down behind the lip of the arena it's just warm. No wind at court level but that tends to pick up as it gets later...or so I am told.

Hair Report:

Dirk is on the court shooting around even though he's not playing. His hair is longer than it's been and he's got a nice head band thing going. I have spent a lot of time with my 4-year-old daughter working on putting on a headband correctly so I notice these things.

Tonight is the first chance for Phoenix Suns fans to watch their team in action during the annual outdoor game at the Indian Wells (Calif.) Tennis Garden pitting the Suns against the Dallas Mavericks...

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Dallas Mavericks' Dirk Nowitzki, left, looks to drive against Phoenix Suns' Jared Dudley during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game Thursday, Jan. 28, 2010, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Matt York)

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9 months ago: Dallas Mavericks' Dirk Nowitzki, left, looks to drive against Phoenix Suns' Jared Dudley during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game Thursday, Jan. 28, 2010, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Matt York)

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"The way the seats are and the way everything is situated, to me, unless you look up and see the moon, it still feels like you're in an arena."

Gentry knows. One team is going to howl at the moon, act the part of wolf, while the other will slink back into the shadows, expose its neck and await its fate.

On Thursday night, the Suns were the sad victim. Tonight they have the moon above them for strength. Will the wolf arise from their hearts? Will the JRich-less Suns attack the Nowtizki-less Mavericks? Or will they once again turn their cheek and expose their necks?

The Phoenix Suns play on NATIONAL TV tonight against the Dallas Mavericks (6:30 AZ time on TNT) at Indian Wells Arena in Palm Springs, California. The Suns are 0-2 in their previous forays under the moon and stars, despite being the event host.

Ex-GM Steve Kerr will provide color commentary. For once, I'll actually be listening to the color guy as he dissects his former team. How many times will he use the word 'we' instead of 'they'? Will he blast new acquisitions, or inanely applaud them? Will he be critical of any Suns players? We shall see. Or hear, that is. 

Jason Richardson is most likely out. Dirk Nowitzki is most likely out, as is Mavs coach Rick Carlisle (fainted).

No word yet whether Channing Frye will play. He is being paid a lot of money to take the court. Who cares that its only preseason and his baby is not yet a week old. He can hire nannys if need be. The Suns need a win! These games matter!

Yet, preseason is preseason.

We can't and shouldn't expect too much, especially this early. Even in the final games of preseason last year, the Suns posted a 20-point loss to Portland and 22-point loss to Philly (bookending a 3,000 point game against the Kings).

In those losses, the Suns were outrebounded badly. Fans were quaking in their boots. Doom. DOOM! Suns should blow it up and start over, they said. Just give up the season, trade Nash and Hill to winners, and start over. Wow would be the 2009-2010 season.

Then the Suns went on a 14-3 run to open the season anyway.

So, don't worry about that happens in preseason, folks. Gentry is experimenting. The players are just playing, without a gameplan and without much purpose, other than trying new skills.

One game the Suns will look unbeatable, another game they'll look like the worst in the league.

Have fun watching the game tonight. Drink a beer or the beverage of your choice, and give your blood pressure a rest.

Just focus on individual players skills. We (and the coaches, I guess) can see how players respond in different lineups, and how their skills may or may not have improved since last season.

But that's it. Don't look at the final score. Don't even look at rotations. Garret Siler and Gani Lawal will not be on the floor with Hill and Turkoglu and Dragic this season. Really, they won't. So don't stress when this lineup fails, and don't cheer if it's successful.

Enjoy the Suns. And enjoy listening to Steve Kerr try to sound objective.

Here's some links to enjoy...

Suns Hit The Road For Cali, J-Rich Won't Play - SB Nation Arizona

The Suns have a lot of improving to do to win their first preseason game of the 2010 season after opening with two bad losses. Over the weekend, they'll head west for a Palm Springs outdoor game.

Phoenix Suns aim to fix issues in outdoor game

Phoenix Suns aim to fix issues in outdoor game, Notes: The Suns are not ready for prime time but are about to be exposed to it and the elements.

Suns host Nowitzki-less Mavs today | | The Desert Sun

New Phoenix Suns forward Hedo Turkoglu said he had seen the NBA Outdoor game at Indian Wells on television. On Friday, during the Suns' shootaround at Indian Wells, Turkoglu got to experience the tennis stadium turned basketball arena. One word came to mind.

Franchise player — Nash continues to make the Suns tick | | The Desert Sun

Talk to people throughout the Phoenix Suns organization, and they all will say Steve Nash makes the whole franchise better.

Can Erick Dampier Solve Phoenix Suns' Rebounding Woes? | Bleacher Report

Say what you want about Amare Stoudemire and his lack of rebounding. He averaged almost nine a game in his career in Phoenix. Now he is gone and so are those rebounds...

Okay, get talkin' you crazy BSotS fans who made this site the #3 basketball blog!

"When you look at a team like the Lakers and they run (Andrew) Bynum and Pau (Gasol) and Lamar (Odom) and a bunch of seven-foot guys, and they added Theo Ratliff, I just think you can't ever have too much size on a team," Gentry said.

Suns seem pretty interested in Dampier.

Read the rest of the story for more from Suns practice today.

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