We need a “Seven Seconds or Less” documentary about the Phoenix Suns
With analytics nerds so often battling the “he got that dawg in him” crowd on Twitter these days, a documentary going back to where the whole debate started is needed now more than ever. Telling the story of the “seven seconds or less” Phoenix Suns offense accomplishes that.
Fixated on scoring often and fast, Mike D’Antoni’s Phoenix teams in the mid-to-late 2000s offered a new breed of basketball. But like most new things, it led to some controversy. With the Suns so concentrated on offensive the game under this play style, their defense left a lot to be desired.
The team’s ability to blow its opponents out in the regular season but inability to get crucial stops especially in the postseason only added to this. However, this “seven seconds or less” offense not only survived its early ridicule, but remains alive and well today.
Although it had its pitfalls, pieces of the “seven seconds or less” offense can be found in the game today. While not quite the same, the Golden State Warriors’ motion offense plays off the same idea in diverting from standstill, back-to-the basket basketball.
Of course, we also saw many of James Harden’s Houston Rockets teams resemble true descendants of the” seven seconds or less” Suns since D’Antoni himself coached those teams. The way this play style grew with effectiveness, survived its early criticisms, and helped build the game we know today all promise to make a compelling story.