It’s always sunny in Philadelphia? I hardly think so. The Phoenix Suns(6-8) had their two game winning streak snapped in Philadelphia(8-6) last night as they fell to the Sixers 101-104. The score pretty much tells the entire story, the game came down to the last shot as Michael Beasley missed the game tying lay-up with 2 seconds left in regulation.
I said in the game preview that although this Sixers team is a poor offensive team, they are lethal from outside and that showed from the gecko. Philadelphia began the game on 2 straight Evan Turner 3-pointers that gave them a 6-0 lead early in the 1st quarter that immediately led to an Alvin Gentry timeout; Turner had 16 points and 9 rebounds on the game. The Sixers made 9 3-pointers on Sunday night in 19 attempts shooting 47% from behind the 3-point line.
However the night belonged to the rising young star Jrue Holiday who scored a career high 33 points and dished out 13 assists; this is the 2nd straight game that an opposing point guard had a career high against the Suns, Greivis Vasquez scored a career high 25 points against the Suns in Phoenix in the last game. Holiday who was suppose to have a breakout year last season after an impressive showing in the playoffs in 2010 took a step back in 2011-2012 but now that Andre Iguodala is gone Holiday is having himself a career year and could very well make the all-star team this season.
“It was a great win for us,” Thaddeus Young said. “We take a lot of pride in how we play and we didn’t want to lose three straight. I think Jrue set the tone from the beginning with his aggressive play. He put us on his shoulders.”
Philadelphia took a 98-91 lead with 3:47 left in regulation after Jrue Holiday converted an and-one play. However the Suns would hold the Sixers scoreless for the next 3 minutes and went on a 6-0 run to set the score at 98-97 after a Jermaine O’Neal jumper with 1:06 left to go.
Former Sun Jason Richardson was questionable for last night’s game after he hurt his ankle against Oklahoma City on Saturday and did not return to action. However Richardson ended up playing and hit a big 20-foot jumper with 47 seconds left in the game to give the Sixers a 100-97 lead.
Beasley would then go down the other end, draw a shooting foul on Lavoy Allen and Beasley would go on to make 2 free throws to close the gap but as it was all night long, Holiday came right back and hit a jumper to with 26 seconds and the score was set at 99-102 in favor of Philadelphia.
After a timeout by the Suns, they’d score quickly off of a Markieff Morris lay-up with 19 seconds to go and Goran Dragic would then commit an intentional foul on Holiday with 14 seconds left in regulation. Holiday would make the 1st free throw then miss the second which put the Suns in a great position to tie or take the lead with 14 seconds left to go.
Beasley would end up being the Suns go to guy but Beasley’s lay-up with 2 seconds left unfortunately rolled off the rim. To completely objective and truthful, it was just awful luck, Beasley’s lay-up was about as good of a look you’re ever going to get down the stretch but unfortunately for Phoenix it just wasn’t meant to be.
Beasley played arguably his best offensive game last night leading the Suns in scoring with 21 points on 8 of 13 shooting. Markieff Morris didn’t have a great game scoring wise but he did record 8 points and 10 rebounds on the evening.
Marcin Gortat exploded in the 3rd quarter and scored 13 points in a 5 minute stretch however Alvin Gentry benched Gortat in the 4th quarter and went with Jermaine O’Neal who had a decent game, as he put up 11 points, 3 rebounds and 2 blocks against Philadelphia. Luis Scola and Goran Dragic each scored 10 points.
The Sixers got good production from nearly all their players but this night belonged 100% to Jrue Holiday. Holiday surpassed his previous career high by 6 points(27 points was his previous career high) and he’s recorded back to back 13 assist games. Former Sun Jason Richardson scored 8 points and pulled down 4 rebounds.
The Suns now fall to 1-5 on the road and they will attempt to bounce back with a win against the Cleveland Cavaliers in Cleveland on Tuesday night. In the Suns last game against Cleveland they came back from a 26-point deficit to steal the win.