Tag:Phoenix Suns
Posted on: February 11, 2011 7:35 pm
Edited on: February 11, 2011 7:48 pm

Agent: Steve Nash on trade block this summer

The agent for Phoenix Suns point guard Steve Nash says his client could be traded this summer. Posted by Ben Golliver. steve-nash

The Phoenix Suns have weathered the post-Amar'e storm better than, say, the Cleveland Cavaliers or Toronto Raptors have handled the departures of LeBron James and Chris Bosh, but they've still had their share of struggles. 

Throughout the tough on-court stretch, whispers regarding the future of veteran point guard Steve Nash have grown louder and louder. But even as the Suns fell well below .500, the team's management and Nash himself both vigorously denied any and all trade rumors. 

Finally: a crack in that facade. ESPN.com reports that Nash's agent Bll Duff, believes that Nash will be placed on the trade market this summer. 
"Steve is a Phoenix Sun and I don't think it's an exaggeration to say he's the face of that franchise," Duffy said. "But logic dictates that it would be prudent for the Suns to start looking at their long-term future in the summer, so we would expect that they may entertain moving him during the summer. We are ready for that and we anticipate a very respectful process if they decide to look at starting over with a younger core."
Phoenix has turned thing around a bit lately following a blockbuster December trade with the Orlando Magic, reaching .500 this week and sitting just outside the Western Conference playoff chase with a record of 25-25. There's no question that the current team, led by Nash, could make a playoff push, with teams like the Denver Nuggets and Utah Jazz potentially falling back to the pack.

Duffy's comment, then, is likely an effort to buy his client some time and peace of mind in the weeks leading up to the trade deadline. The Suns might as well ride Nash as far as he will take them this season. Nevertheless, a public acknowledgement that the Suns might look to part ways with their franchise player in the near future qualifies as a fairly big headline, especially given the track record the team has presented up until this point.
Posted on: February 7, 2011 3:03 pm
Edited on: February 7, 2011 3:14 pm

Phil Jackson takes shot at Kevin Garnett

Los Angeles Lakers coach Phil Jackson takes a shot at Boston Celtics forward Kevin Garnett. Posted by Ben Golliver. phil-jackson

Earlier today, we noted that the NBA has taken to looking past the transgressions of Boston Celtics forward Kevin Garnett, allowing a laundry list of unsportsmanlike plays to stand without any meaningful repercussions.

One person who isn't content to let it all go without saying something: Los Angeles Lakers coach Phil Jackson, of course, who took a solid swipe at Garnett while praising his center Pau Gasol, as quoted by DailyBreeze.com.
"Pau knows who he is," Jackson said. "He's tenacious. I like him to be aggressive offensively. He's always a willing passer. The one thing I'm on him about is getting that first rebound. Don't let them knock it out of your hands. Don't let them knock it away.
"Otherwise, all this talk about how aggressive he is or how aggressive he isn't falls on deaf ears. He totally gets it. He is who he is. We're not going to make him into (Boston's Kevin) Garnett. He's not going to go around and punch guys in the (groin). He's too nice of a guy.

"This is an intelligent person who understands what this game is about. We've been to the Finals three years in a row, so that's part of it."
Jackson, of course, is making reference to a recent low blow Garnett leveled on Phoenix Suns big man Channing Frye, a play that eventually led to his ejection due to arguing and for which he refused to apologize and was not suspended.

We've previously lamented that there is no one at this point of his career that can get through to Garnett, no one that can encourage him to better understand the decency line and work a bit harder to stay on the correct side of it. The only person who can do that, save a super-duper heavy-handed commissioner Stern, is Garnett himself, and he clearly doesn't care.

Given that situation, and the league's inactivity to this point, it's nice -- for once, a rare situation indeed -- to hear Jackson offer his two cents.  Even if only a glancing blow, Jackson's statement serves as an acknowledgement that those around the league -- colleagues and competitors -- are not totally blind to his shenanigans. 

To describe Garnett as a player that goes around punching guys in the groin certainly sells Garnett short, but that's exactly the point: Garnett's greatness as an individual defender, team defender, leader, consistent rebounder and there-when-you-need-it scorer are overshadowed by his antics. To set up Garnett as the foil to Gasol's nice, intelligent, winning persona is to attack Garnett's professionalism and to indirectly question whether his priorities are in order. Those are big words, and not many around the league have the audicity or confidence to deliver them.

It pains me to say this, but in this situation we need more Phil Jacksons. 
Posted on: February 4, 2011 7:14 pm

Kevin Garnett: no apology for dirty play on Frye

Boston Celtics forward Kevin Garnett writes that he will not apologize for his dirty play against the Phoenix Suns. Posted by Ben Golliver.

Last week, Boston Celtics forward Kevin Garnett was ejected from a game against the Phoenix Suns following an argument that began when Garnett slide under Suns big man Channing Frye and contacted him in the genitals during a jump shot attempt. Garnett was not suspended for the incident, and the NBA explained the ejection resulted from multiple technical fouls assessed for arguing and yelling after the play, rather than the dirty play itself.

WEEI.com notes a recent blog post written by Garnett, on the website of his Chinese shoe manufacturer. Garnett writes that he "never apologizes" for his action and explained the incident by saying "I play with passion." 
We ”played a back-to-back in Phoenix. This game was physical as well and super ugly. I never apologize for my actions, as I play with passion. I actually got ejected for (the ref said) ‘talking too much.’  Can you believe that? It was unfortunate, and I hate to leave my team out there without being around to support them. Doc [Rivers] got ejected and then fined $15,000 for not leaving the court in a timely manner. A TIMELY MANNER. WOW. The game ended, and we got worked over. It could’ve been the back-to-back and travel, but they played well.”
We probably shouldn't expect any more or less of Garnett, who has a well established track record of pushing the envelope on the court in the name of obtaining a competitive advantage and then sticking to his guns after the fact. 

Here, given the flagrant violation of NBA etiquette, Garnett is simply thumbing his nose at his critics and daring those who are indifferent to think less of him. A Frank Sinatra-esque "My Way" philosophy is almost always admirable, but not here, where both Garnett's actions and his indifference to his violations of generally regarded conduct norms are regrettable. 

Garnett, a surefire Hall of Famer and an NBA All-Star this year, should be better than this pettiness and stubbornness.
Posted on: February 1, 2011 5:26 pm

3-Up, 3-Down: Lakers riding the see-saw

Posted by Royce Young

Each week we give you three teams trending up and three teams trending down in correlation with our Power Rankings. Check out the latest edition of CBSSports.com's Power Rankings here.


1. Dallas Mavericks (5): Here they come. Finally.

After a few weeks of major struggles following Dirk Nowitzki's knee injury and Caron Butler's season-ending surgery, the Mavs finally appear to be righting the ship. They've won five straight and appear to be finding that mojo all over again. Better yet, the injury to Dirk might have a silver lining as some other players had to re-find themselves a bit. Shawn Marion is playing well, J.J. Barea has stepped up big off the bench and Tyson Chandler is playing downright angry.

2. Knicks (12): The Knicks have been a bit up and down, but that comes with being a largely mediocre team. But they've won three of four and appear to actually be finding a bit of defense too. In a big win over Miami, they held the powerful Heat to just 88 points including a fourth quarter lockdown where they gave up just 15 points.

The Knicks clearly aren't equipped to be an actual contender in the East, but they do look like a squad that will give someone fits in the postseason.

3. Phoenix Suns (18):
When Steve Nash is running your show, all hope is never lost. The Suns have eased themselves back into the Western playoff discussion after winning seven of 10. The new pieces are starting to come together as Marcin Gortat had one of the best games of his professional career. Vince Carter is still showing a heartbeat and Mickael Pietrus is helping add a little defense to their chops.

With wins over the Celtics and Hornets the past week, the Suns are starting to grab some attention again. Sustaining success will be difficult in the West, but they're at least part of the conversation again.

1. Los Angeles Lakers (7): One week, they're on top of the world looking like maybe the most dominant team in basketball. The next, they're rather pedestrian, struggling to find points and having an even harder time finding stops.

The Lakers are the type of team with the spotlight directly in their face at all times and when they stink, we all notice. Kind of comes with being the defending champ, you see. General manager Mitch Kupchak is talking trades, Andrew Bynum's knee is acting up again and Kobe is hogging the ball. Just another day in Lakerland, right?

2. Utah Jazz (13): Jerry Sloan just can't seem to put his finger on the problem righ tnow in Utah. They've dropped seven of nine and the two wins were only over Minnesota and Charlotte. And both were struggles to get there.

The obvious issue is on the defensive side where the Jazz are giving up a hundred points to everyone . And when Deron Williams isn't able to carry them, they just can't keep up. Al Jefferson has been solid, but Paul Millsap just isn't the same as Carlos Boozer. Utah is still a good team no doubt, but there are problems to be solved.

3. Toronto Raptors (29):
The only reason we haven't all noticed the Raptors' 12-game losing streak is because Cleveland is toeing a historic line right now. But Toronto has been miserable lately. They were never good to start with, but the past two weeks have been especially terrible.
Posted on: January 30, 2011 2:57 pm
Edited on: January 30, 2011 3:02 pm

Celtics coach Doc Rivers fined after ejection

Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers has been fined by the NBA following his ejection in a Friday night game against the Phoenix Suns. Posted by Bendoc-rivers Golliver.

We've already noted this weekend that Friday's game between the Boston Celtics and the Phoenix Suns ended wildly, with Celtics forward Kevin Garnett being ejected following a skirmish set off by a low blow on Suns big man Channing Frye.

Well before that fourth quarter brouhaha, though, Celtics coach Doc Rivers was also ejected from the game. On Sunday, the NBA announced that Rivers had been fined for his actions following the ejection.
Boston Celtics head coach Doc Rivers has been fined $15,000 for failing to leave the court in a timely manner following an ejection, it was announced today by Stu Jackson, NBA Executive Vice President, Basketball Operations.
The incident occurred with 4:33 remaining in the second period of the Celtics’ 88-71 loss to the Phoenix Suns at US Airways Arena in Phoenix on January 28.
ESPNBoston.com describes the scene surrounding the ejection.
With the Celtics trailing 40-25, Rivers was ejected late in the quarter after arguing with referee Steve Javie during a timeout. Rivers was hit with one technical foul and kept arguing with Javie, pointing to the official and his head as he yelled across the court. Rivers got in a few more choice words before finally walking off the court.
All the arguing was to no avail ultimately, as the Celtics wound up losing to the Suns, 88-71.

On Sunday, Rivers and the Celtics have a big opportunity to turn the page, travelling to Los Angeles for a marquee match-up against the Lakers. Here's a look at CBSSports.com's preview coverage of the 2010 NBA Finals rematch.
Posted on: January 29, 2011 1:11 am
Edited on: January 29, 2011 1:27 am

Kevin Garnett ejected after dirty play on Frye

Video of Boston Celtics forward Kevin Garnett getting ejected after a dirty play on Phoenix Suns big man Channing Frye. Posted by Ben Golliver.

The Phoenix Suns were leading the Boston Celtics, 80-69, with roughly four minutes to go in the fourth quarter down in the desert, when all heck broke loose. It all started when Phoenix Suns big man Channing Frye attempted a three-pointer, and Boston Celtics forward Kevin Garnett closed out to defend. As part of the close out, Garnett extended his right hand and contacted Frye fairly lightly in the genital region, and he also slid his right foot underneath Frye, causing Frye's left foot to come down on Garnett's right foot, which led to an awkward landing.

Frye came to the ground without twisting his ankle too badly and initially doubled over in pain, clutching his groin. Soon after, though, Frye got up and got directly into Garnett's face, as Garnett pretended like he didn't know what had happened and why he had been whistled for a foul. Frye clearly took issue with Garnett's action and yelled at him directly, and the two players touched foreheads as they jostled. Suns big man Marcin Gortat and official Steve Javie tried to act as intermediaries to break up the scuffle, but the scrum quickly grew in numbers as members of both teams got in on the pushing and shoving action.

Here's video that shows the post-foul scrum and then multiple replays from different angles of Garnett's foul on Frye.

After everyone settled down, the officials engaged in a lengthy review. The result: Garnett was whistled for a foul on the play, a double technical was called on Garnett and Frye, and then Garnett was issued a second technical foul and was ejected. Celtics center Kendrick Perkins and Celtics guard Nate Robinson were also assessed technical fouls for their roles in the scrum.

The official explanation for Garnett's ejection: he was assessed the first technical for his initial actions in scuffling with Frye and the second technical was for continuing to jaw after the fact.

The Suns held on to close out the home win over the Celtics, 88-71.
Posted on: January 18, 2011 1:17 pm
Edited on: January 18, 2011 1:24 pm
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Posted on: January 11, 2011 8:41 pm
Edited on: January 11, 2011 8:41 pm

3-Up, 3-Down 1.11.11: Lakers back in business

Magic and Lakers are trending up while the Suns and Nuggets tailspin in this week's 3-Up 3-Down.
Posted by Matt Moore

Each week we give you three teams trending up and three teams trending down in correlation with our Power Rankings. Check out the latest edition of CBSSports.com's Power Rankings here .


Orlando Magic (3): Nine wins straight for the Magic since The Trade, and in their last four since the start of the year have outscored their opponent by nearly 14 points.  Stunningly, it has been Hedo Turkoglu, not Jason Richardson or Gilbert Arenas who has come on strong for the Magic. Turkoglu is playing exceptionally well, especially in passing, where his assist percentage is at 29.5%, a ridiculous number and by far the highest of his career since returning to Orlando.  The Magic are now firmly back in the race for homecourt advantage, even as Miami keeps them at arm's length in their division. Big rematch in Boston looming on MLK Day. Win two against Boston with what will likely be Kevin Garnett a few days after his return and you've really got something going.

Los Angeles Lakers (4): What can an easy schedule do for you? A four-game winning streak. That's what. Even with Matt Barnes going down, the Lakers are getting back in their groove, thanks in large part to Andrew Bynum. Bynum's size advantage makes the Lakers a completely different team. Letting Gasol focus on just being taller than other power forwards in tandem with Bynum and having Bynum clean up all the misses the Lakers are chucking lately is a pretty sure fire secret to success. Now if he can just stay healthy.

Charlotte Bobcats (21): Sure, the roster is headed nowhere, they have no legitimate star, they fired their coach and their attendance is terrible. But they've won three in a row and have gotten back to being a failry dangerous team with D.J. Augustin taking big leaps now that he's out from Larry Brown's oppressive point guard yoke. Throw in Stephen Jackson keeping up his leadership and you've got a team that's... okay, it's still not going anywhere. But it's might have options at the trade deadline.


Dallas Mavericks(6): Dirk, hurt. Butler, out for the year. Beabuois, still not back. The Mavericks just couldn't keep pace and injuries have slammed them in the face. When healthy, the Mavericks are a Western Conference Contender. But getting healthy isn't inevitable with the age they have on roster and the fact that some years, you're just injured. The question that looms over the franchise is if Cuban will consider himself compelled to make a splash at the deadline to find a replacement for Butler. Cuban made a huge splash over All-Star weekend last year, and he doesn't seem to be content to wait with a roster on a deadline.

Denver Nuggets (15): Ujiri. Please, please, please make it stop. No one believes Melo will be in Denver past June. No one. Make it end. Please. We're dying of boredom waiting for this deal to go through and the team is dying on the vine with all the distractions. End it.

Phoenix Suns (22): You ever seen those bands who are desperately trying to cling to their popularity, playing smaller and smaller clubs while playing the same songs that are now relics, only with replacement band members? Meet the Suns.  Marcin Gortat seems to have thought he was quite a bit more than he was. This is what it's like on the wrong side of the playoff tracks.
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com