NBA: The Phoenix Suns Surprising Start Continues
At 14-9, the Phoenix Suns are currently just a game behind the Los Angeles Clippers for first place in the NBA’s Pacific Division. There are still 59 games to play, but Suns fans have to be impressed with the unexpected start this team has had.
There are several reasons why this team is where they are today. They are out playing all expectations, with almost every single player on the roster stepping up and contributing to the team’s success. Whether it is on the offensive end with 3 point shots, timely passing that leads to points or getting offensive rebounds to keep the ball in play.
On defense their aggressive style has caught some teams by surprise. They are capable of forcing turnovers, by stealing the ball or forcing bad passes and they have been able to stop the three point shooters on the opposing team; they lead the league with the lowest opponent three-point percentage at 32.3%.
Next we have to mention Head Coach, Jeff Hornacek. He has brought back exciting, fast-paced basketball to Phoenix. He has kept the players’ self-confidence high in a season that many said could be the worst since the Suns’ expansion season.
Another consideration is that there is no “drama” coming from the locker room, unlike last year, and that has to be credited to Coach Hornacek.
The final thing to look at is the point guard duo of Eric Bledsoe and Goran Dragic. They certainly have made things connect for this team during their surprising start. After missing six games due to shin injury Bledsoe has sparked this team with a return to the starting lineup. The Suns have gone 4-1 since his return, and combine him with Dragic and this starting guard duo has averaged close 40 points per game. Against the Kings, Bledsoe scored his career high with 28 points and he is averaging over 19 points a game, with 6.4 assists a game.
Dragic is averaging 19 points a game to go along with his 6 assists a game and makes 53% of his shots. He missed three games and left two early due to an ankle injury. When both players do not finish the game the Suns are 5-6. When both play the entire game they are 9-3.
Could this duo be one of the best in the NBA right now? It might be too early to say, but no doubt they have the potential to be among the league’s best.
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