Phoenix Suns: 3 Adjustments to Make For Game 6 vs Clippers

Phoenix Suns, Chris Paul (Photo by Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports)
Phoenix Suns, Chris Paul (Photo by Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Phoenix Suns, Jae Crowder
Phoenix Suns, Jae Crowder (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images) /

Phoenix Suns Adjustment #3 for Game 6: Run the offense through Jae Crowder in the high post when Clippers go zone

Jae Crowder is an amazing passer. We all saw it when Crowder made the perfect “Valley-Oop” to Ayton to win Game 2 for the Suns. After that second contest, he shared some insight as to how he made the incredible pass to Ayton.

"“You’re focusing on how to make the pass right. It’s happening so fast. You don’t have much time to think, you just react. I just reacted.”"

It was not just a flash-in-the-pan play for Crowder. He also had six assists for the Suns in that contest, a bright spot in an otherwise dreary performance for him.

Crowder can be a problem for the Clippers high 2-3 zone. He has the size and court vision to facilitate from the high post, and can knock down the open mid-range shot if the Clippers give it to him. Moreover, Bridges can work as a savvy cutter to find crevices within the zone, while Ayton can then just cut from block-to-block and finish at the rim like he usually does.

But Crowder needs to be the guy to break the Clippers zone. Playing their conventional offense against the 2-3 is not going to work since there are now ten sets of eyes fixated on Paul and Booker each time they touch the ball.

If Crowder can consistently create easy looks for his teammates, then the Clippers will have to abandon the zone and go back to their switching on man-to-man defense.

Conclusion

The Phoenix Suns need to adapt in Game 6 to what the Clippers accomplished in Game 5. Los Angeles already has the upper hand in terms of adjustments. The Suns have to impose their will on the small Clippers front line and dominate the glass. Ayton and the rest of Phoenix’s front-court needs to make them pay for going to a five-guard lineup.

Next. 3 LA Clippers Still Crucial for the Suns to Shut Down. dark

If the Suns can aggressively leverage LA’s own adjustments against them, then they will fly out of Los Angeles as Western Conference Champions. But if they fail and the Clippers stay as hot as they were in Game 5, we will have a Game 7.