Why the Phoenix Suns blew out the Dallas Mavericks

Phoenix Suns (Photo by Barry Gossage/NBAE via Getty Images)
Phoenix Suns (Photo by Barry Gossage/NBAE via Getty Images) /
6 of 6
Phoenix Suns Deandre Ayton Luka Doncic (Photo by Barry Gossage/NBAE via Getty Images)
Phoenix Suns Deandre Ayton Luka Doncic (Photo by Barry Gossage/NBAE via Getty Images) /


Finally, I do have to point out one negative.

After all, the Suns didn’t beat the Warriors, they beat the Mavericks, some pundit’s offseason dark horse playoff team, although probably more of a longer shot than even Phoenix.

The Suns’ defense was…eh.

Yes, Igor is supposed to have a strong pedigree working for several very good defensive teams in the past, and it is expected to take time implementing a lot of what works for good defensive teams on a Suns roster that is obviously designed to be run-and-gun.

While Dallas’ shooting was nothing to write home about (they finished 43.2% from the field and 30.3% from beyond the arc on 33 attempts), they missed a number wide open layups and close shots that would have (at times in the second half) made the score much closer, and who knows: potentially changes the complexion of the game (although something tells me that Booker still would have taken over Stephen Curry-style).

There were also a number of easy layups and dunks too by Dallas that went entirely uncontested by Phoenix defenders (in particular a few occasions of Deandre Ayton letting players go right by), that, had Phoenix set the tone physically and man-handled Dallas players a few times early (Ayton sincerely looked afraid to make contact with his good friend Luka Doncic on one open layup), they actually might have put the game away a lot sooner as Dallas would have refused to drive entirely for fear of contact.

Next. Valley of the Suns Live! the Regular Season Preview Edition!. dark

The silver lining to this is: if the Suns still outscore their opponents because of a fantastic offense, then mediocre defense will suffice for now.

Certainly though, if they really do want to win consistently; make the playoffs regularly; and knock on the door of the championship soon; they’ll have to realize that defense is the key, and that they should focus on it now, because it truly is: Time to Rise.