The Phoenix Suns have turned two recent blowouts into single digit losses, but not much should be made of these too little, too late comebacks.
The Phoenix Suns went down 22 to the Denver Nuggets in the fourth quarter before cutting it down to as little as three, eventually going on to lose by four. After that game, I commended them for refusing to quit.
Just two games later, the Suns played a similar game. After a dreadful start, the Suns were down by 30 to the Philadelphia 76ers nearing the end of the third quarter. Again, they cut the lead down to three near the end of the game but went on to lose by five.
While it’s certainly nice to see the Phoenix Suns playing hard until the end of blowout games instead of rolling over, these comebacks aren’t a sign of any kind of improved play.
On Wednesday night against Philly, the comeback was almost handed to them. The Sixers, already missing players to long term injury, were down two starters on the second half of a back to back. They were tired and up so many points that they just stopped caring.
Of course it’s better to play hard until the end. And in that sense, these two games have been good signs for the Suns. But other than moral victories, they’ve been meaningless.
The Suns never had a real chance to win either of these games. It was always too little, too late. The only thing they really accomplished was making Joel Embiid and Nikola Jokic play until the very end.
And it’s not that bad the Suns were down big to the Nuggets and Sixers. They’re two of the NBA’s top teams. But no one should mistake these final scores with the Suns being able to compete with teams on that level.
So far, this home stand can only be described as a disappointment. Considering how tough the Suns’ opponents have been, it hasn’t been surprising at all. But it’s still disappointing.
Entering the home stand on a 5-2 run, the Suns looked like maybe they could steal a win from their tough schedule ahead. But more importantly, their goal should have been to play teams close for much of the game.
Despite a 16 point loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder, The Suns kept it more or less competitive for much of the night, actually leading by three points through three quarters before having their doors blown off in the fourth.
But the next three games were all blowouts, regardless of what the final scores indicate. And that’s obviously not what we hoped to see heading into this difficult stretch.
Losing four in a row isn’t the end of the world, especially to the Thunder, Nuggets, Golden State Warriors, and 76ers. But it’s disappointing the Suns haven’t put up a single good 48 minute fight.
The Phoenix Suns will have a chance to bounce back in the next three games, finishing the seven game home stretch against the Los Angeles Clippers, Charlotte Hornets, and Sacramento Kings. It’s still a tough group of teams, but it’s not as bad as what they just faced.
The Suns have been showing persistence, which is great, but not much should be made of their recent comebacks. They’ll really prove something when they can put it together for a full game, not just when their opponents have let off the gas.