Phoenix Suns face Minnesota Timberwolves in Battle of Youth


Phoenix Suns (15-29) v Minnesota Timberwolves (16-28)

Tuesday 1/24/2017 7:00pm
Talking Stick Resort Arena, Phoenix, AZ
Fox Sports Arizona/Arizona Sports 98.7FM

Season Series – Timberwolves lead 2-0
All-Time Series – Phoenix leads 67-37
Last Matchup – December 19, 2016 Minnesota won 115-108
Suns’ Last Game – Win over Toronto Raptors 115-103
Timberwolves’ Last Game – Win over Denver Nuggets 111-108
Suns’ Scoring AveragesPTS/G: 106.1 (12th of 30) Opp PTS/G: 111.5 (29th of 30)
Timberwolves’ Scoring AveragesPTS/G: 103.3 (19th of 30) Opp PTS/G: 104.4 (12th of 30)


Phoenix Suns

The Phoenix Suns came off of a brief three game road trip feeling pretty good after going 2-1, while finishing the trip off with a pretty convincing victory over the Eastern Conference’s second best team, the Toronto Raptors. The Suns are now 10-6 v the East and 5-23 against the West.

There has been a discussion over the past few years that if the Suns had been in the East that they would have been in the playoffs several times. With that in mind, follow me here: This season, Phoenix has a 62.5% winning percentage in 16 games against the East, and a 17.9% against the West. If you flip the number of games per conference but keep the winning percentage, the Suns would be about 21-23 overall, 1/2 a game out of 8th place in the Eastern Conference.

The game against Toronto provided several very interesting story lines:

  • Tyson Chandler’s franchise streak of seven games with 15+ rebounds was broken. He finished with 9 on the game.
  • Devin Booker’s scored 20 points stretching his personal best streak of scoring at least 20 to nine consecutive games.
  • Eric Bledsoe’s 40 points was not only a career high, but he has re-taken the team lead in scoring average at 20.9. Granted there is still plenty of time, but he is scoring at a career-high rate.
  • P.J. Tucker recorded a double-double, the first of the season for the forward.

5 Important Team Stats

Phoenix Suns

  1. In their last three games, the Suns are shooting a blistering 88.9% from the free throw line, shooting 113-127.
  2. While the team has averaged 17.2 assists over a five-game stretch below their season-long averaging, Eric Bledsoe has upped his game, averaging 9.6.
  3. The 4th quarter has been somewhat of a killer for the Suns, giving up an average of 27.1 points. Over their last three games, however, they are only giving up an ice cold 20.7.
  4. The Suns shoot a mild 34.5% from beyond the arc on the season. However, in the clutch, that percentage drops to 25.9%.
  5. On defense the Suns give up a crazy 37.5% shooting percentage on shots from 25-29 feet, second worst in the NBA.

Minnesota Timberwolves

  1. Karl-Anthony Towns has been on a torrid stretch over the past month. In his last five games in particular he has average 28.5 points and 13.2 rebounds.
  2. Prior to missing the team’s last game against the Denver Nuggets, Ricky Rubio had been one of the top point guards in the league over a ten-day period averaging 11 points and 11.7 assists.
  3. Minnesota is very hot and cold depending on the half. In the first half they average 53.8 points, good for top-ten in the league. In the second half they average 48.8, 7th worst.
  4. The Timberwolves are on a three-game winning streak against the Suns. In those games, Andrew Wiggins has torched the Suns for 27.7 points per game, well above his career averages.
  5. In those same three games, the Timberwolves have outscored the Suns 32.7 – 29. Though high scoring for both teams, the first quarter has catapulted Minnesota to early leads that the Suns have not been able to overcome.