Apr 16, 2014; Sacramento, CA, USA; Phoenix Suns center Miles Plumlee (22) drives in against Sacramento Kings forward Jason Thompson (34) during the first quarter at Sleep Train Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Las Vegas Summer League: Suns outshoot Bucks late to win

LAS VEGAS — The Phoenix Suns used a barrage of three pointers late to come from behind and defeat the Milwaukee Bucks 93-82 on Sunday night in this second game of the Las Vegas Summer League. Trailing by eight after three, the Suns hit seven three-pointers in the fourth quarter and used a 15-0 run to put the game away for good late in the fourth.

They may not have needed a comeback if not for a couple of injuries that forced them to play shorthanded. Center Alex Len was held out with a broken pinky that he injured in Saturday’s game, and T.J. Warren received a cut to his eye that swelled to the point that he was limited to just five minutes.

Seth Curry led the Suns in scoring with 26 points, including 15 in the fourth quarter. Archie Goodwin led the starting unit with 17 of his own. Bucks second overall pick Jabari Parker struggled to find any rhythm and was held to 11 points on 4-15 shooting.

Who Impressed?

Miles Plumlee: The center had a huge bounce-back night after a poor showing in the Summer League opener on Saturday against the Golden State Warriors. Plumlee had six points with 12 rebounds and three “loud” blocks that brought the gym to a frenzy. Plumlee’s two-handed block on Parker summed up Phoenix’s defense that help the forward to 11 points, a 4-for-15 shooting night and six turnovers. After not scoring a field goal on Saturday, Plumlee hit three, including two on jump shots. His 1-on-1 post moves were much stronger; on eight attempts he was 2-for-6 with two beautiful passes that led to free throws for his teammate. Overall, I saw the type of game that is to be expected in Summer League from the Suns starting center.

Seth Curry: Do not leave a Curry open. That should be common knowledge around the NBA by now. The “other” Curry put on a shooting clinic by going 5-for-7 from deep and 7-for-9 overall for 26 points. He scored nine points in the first quarter before sitting out the entire second quarter. He played sparingly in the third, but took the game over in the fourth. Anything that he threw in the air went in, including an and-1 three pointer that essentially sealed the win. Curry is earning himself a training camp invite somewhere this October if he continues to shoot the way that he is.

Archie Goodwin: This was another solid game from Goodwin, who posted 17 points on 6-for-15 shooting. He continued to be aggressive taking the ball to the basket and even showed a little bit of confidence in his outside shot by knocking down a three pointer. He continues to develop game by game and that is exactly what Suns fans should hope to see.

Who Needs Work?

Alec Brown: To be fair to Brown, we all knew coming in that he was raw and would be a project. The thing that sticks out to me is just how lost he seems on the floor. Going back to Saturday, Brown missed his first 11 field goals before knocking down a jump shot and a three pointer during the Suns’ 15-0 run. Maybe the strong finish can get him confidence to show us the shooting that the Suns thought warranted a late second round flyer on.

Final Thoughts

  1. It reality, it is a shame that Len’s Summer League is over after one game. He played fantastic on Saturday night with confidence and poise, something he didn’t have much of last year. A week of games would have helped his development greatly.
  2. To stay on topic, it was even more of a shame that Warren only got five minutes of playing time tonight because of a cut to his eye. He scored four points on two free throws and a long-range two-pointer. His injury shouldn’t keep him out for any other games and with a day off Monday, I would assume he is going to be fine for the rest of the week.
  3. The Suns ran most of the offense around Goodwin tonight, especially in the first half. There was a stretch in the second quarter where he was getting to the basket at will. It has impressed me with how much ease he gets to the basket, and when he gets fouled he is going to the free throw line and knocking down his shots.
  4. Tyler Ennis hasn’t done much to impress or depress in these two games. He has just been pretty blah. He is expected to play most of this season in the D-League, so the pressure is not on him to make the team out of camp. Even though he isn’t playing badly, the strong play of Curry isn’t making him standout. Suns fans can’t be quick to judge Ennis after this Summer League and have to remember that he is going to be a project coming out of the gates.
  5. Dionte Christmas has struggled mightily thus far. His outside shot has just not been there, and it is frustrating to watch, especially knowing how good of a shooter Christmas is. His time with the Suns could be running out regardless of his play this summer, but it will be important to show he can shoot the ball for other NBA teams.

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