NBA power rankings love the Phoenix Suns

Phoenix Suns, Devin Booker (Photo by Jennifer Stewart-USA TODAY) Sports
Phoenix Suns, Devin Booker (Photo by Jennifer Stewart-USA TODAY) Sports /

The Phoenix Suns provided the NBA community further evidence that the Western Conference is a significantly better group than its Eastern counterparts.

Entering Monday, the West was 93-55 (.628) against the East in interconference games after going 20-11 last week.

With victories over Boston, Milwaukee and Philadelphia — along with a rout of Orlando on Sunday night — the Suns applied a firm grip on playoff positioning.

The Phoenix Suns continued their march up the NBA powers rankings, rolling to a fifth consecutive victory and their ninth win in the past 10 games.

Devin Booker confidently buried a couple of Steph Curry-length 3-pointers — in the natural flow of the offense; not in a desperation mode — and collected the NBA’s Western Conference Player of the Week award.

From the team release:

"Booker averaged 32.3 points on 56.3% shooting from the field and 47.6% from 3-point range, plus 5.3 assists and 5.0 rebounds in four games, helping the Suns extend their winning streak to six straight overall including wins over the Eastern Conference’s top two teams in Philadelphia and Milwaukee. Booker scored at least 27 points on over 50% from the field in all four games during the week, twice scoring his season high of 36 points."

For Booker, surprisingly, this was his first career Player of the Week award; the last time the Suns had such an award was Goran Dragić on Feb. 3, 2014.

The surge in quality for Booker inspires a reminder for Suns fans: Tuesday at 9:59 p.m. MT is the deadline to vote on All-Star candidates.

(Voting can be executed via, on the NBA app, or on Twitter by tweeting, retweeting or replying with either the player’s hashtag, for example #DevinBooker or handle @DevinBook along with the hashtag #NBAAllStar.)

ESPN power rankings: Phoenix Suns are #5

With a nationally televised showdown with another leading Eastern Conference contender, the Brooklyn Nets, Phoenix has an opportunity to show the rest of the NBA what it’s all about.

During the unbeaten streak last week, the Suns are certainly opening some eyes.

"The current run is tied for their second-longest such streak in the past 10 seasons, behind only last season’s 8-0 bubble performance. Devin Booker has been on fire the past four games, averaging 32.3 points while shooting 56.3% overall. He had three consecutive games of at least 30 points for the first time this season and started Sunday’s game outscoring Orlando by himself in the first quarter (17-16) before finishing with 27." power rankings: Phoenix Suns are #4 lists only the No. 1 Jazz, No. 2 Lakers and No. 3 Clippers ahead of the Phoenix Suns.

One of the interesting aspects of the Suns’ terrific start to this season is that they can’t really be put in a box.

Phoenix began its roll with a drastically improved defense but, as the defense struggled a little, the offense has taken off.

In the victories over Milwaukee and Philadelphia, the offense was in the spotlight.

"The Suns shot 40-for-70 (57%) from between the restricted area and the 3-point line and 25-for-56 (45%) from 3-point range over the two games. For the season, Chris Paul (52.2%) and Devin Booker (50.8%) are two of the 11 players who have shot better than 50% on at least 100 shots between the restricted area and the 3-point line. (“Analytics” would not tell them to stop shooting from the mid-range.)"

The talent on offense and defense is no fluke, as more than a third of the season’s scheduled 72 games have been played.

CBS Sports power rankings: Phoenix Suns #3

CBS moved Phoenix up another notch, from 4 to 3 this week, and recognized the additional quality Dario Saric brought in his first game back.

"Devin Booker exploded this week, averaging 32.3 points on 48 percent 3-point shooting, while Chris Paul put up 19.3 points and 8.7 assists on 57 percent from deep. Phoenix also added another weapon with the return of Dario Saric, who scored 15 points in 20 minutes and was a plus-18 against his former Sixers."

A test of focus comes late this week with back-to-back road games Friday and Saturday against New Orleans and Memphis.

Bleacher Report power rankings: Phoenix Suns #2

OK, so this may be a little high — even for the most die-hard Suns fan — but, hey, that’s why rankings are interesting to peruse: their subjectivity.

As B/R moved the Suns from 6 to 2, the focus was on the impressive improvement in chemistry between the team’s two most important players, Devin Booker and Chris Paul.

"The game against the Bucks was the first time both scored more than 25 points in the same contest. Phoenix has a net rating of 19.4 when they’re on the floor together. Booker, in particular, has been on fire during the streak, scoring 28.3 points per game and averaging 5.7 assists. In the win over the Sixers, he poured in 24 second-half points and was just unstoppable."

Next. Phoenix Suns look-back: The Bucks game. dark