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Phoenix Suns

Updated Nov 2, 2012 - 5:24 pm

Suns' swingman P.J. Tucker off to a fast start

Phoenix Suns forward P.J. Tucker dunks against the Golden State Warriors in the fourth quarter of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in Phoenix. The Warriors won 87-85.(AP Photo/Paul Connors)

Phoenix Suns swingman P.J. Tucker was a bright spot in the team's opening night loss against the Golden State Warriors Wednesday.

The 27-year-old journeyman played 23 minutes, including the entire fourth quarter where he scored all 10 of his points

Legendary Suns broadcaster Al McCoy was impressed with Tucker and not surprised that coach Alvin Gentry kept him in the game late.

"Alvin [Gentry] has some of the philosophies that my friend the late Cotton Fitzsimmons [had]," McCoy told Arizona Sports 620's Doug and Wolf Friday. "Cotton used to say that ‘if I put a guy on the floor and he is doing it, he stays there 'til he drops.'"

As a result of Tucker playing the entire fourth quarter, starting small forward Michael Beasley didn't see any action late in the game.

"In some corners Coach Gentry was asked ‘how could you keep Beasley on the bench the entire fourth quarter?'" McCoy said. "Well, because a guy like P.J. Tucker came in and completely dominated the game."

Tucker played 17 games for the Toronto Raptors in the 2006-2007 season, but has spent the last five seasons playing internationally.

Even though he is not a household name, the Suns expect Tucker to be a difference-maker off the bench this season.

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