After Phoenix Suns head coach Alvin Gentry took home Western Conference Coach of the Month honors on Thursday, it was only fitting that his best offensive player captured the award just over 24 hours later.
Amare Stoudemire’s monster March — 27.3 points, 9.9 rebounds, 57.7 FG percentage, 84.8 FT percentage — earned him Western Conference Player of the Month honors, the NBA announced earlier tonight.
Amare posted seven 30-point games and a 44-point effort in the month of March, and he’s even continued his onslaught into April as he scored 29 points on 13-of-15 shooting in tonight’s win over the Pistons.
When Stoudemire is playing motivated on both sides of the ball, the Suns are nearly impossible to stop. It is no coincidence that Phoenix is tied for the best record in the NBA since Jan. 28 (23-5), which was the game that lit a fire under Amare after he was benched for the entire fourth quarter in a win over the Mavs.
Ever since, STAT has been in full beast mode, scoring 30 at will, and doing it about as efficiently as any player in the NBA while adding in a few monster jams along the way. Stoudemire is continuing to look more and more like a max-money player, and as Schwartz argued recently, the Suns need to find a way to bring back the big man at all costs.