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Suns face tough schedule with little hope

PHOENIX – The Phoenix Suns will have to be nearly perfect the rest of the season in order to make the playoffs.

And even that may not be enough.

After Friday’s crushing 106-100 defeat to the New Orleans Hornets, the Suns will need some kind of divine intervention to sneak into the NBA playoffs.

“All of our games are must wins. We don’t have a margin of error anymore. Every time we line up to play, whether at home or on the road, it becomes a must win game for us,” said coach Alvin Gentry on Friday.

Phoenix(36-35) is now three games behind the eighth seed Memphis Grizzlies(40-33) and five games back from the seventh seeded Hornets(42-31) with only 11 games left to play.

The schedule won’t make it any easier.

Phoenix is slated to play the Dallas Mavericks(50-21) and the San Antonio Spurs(57-15) each two more times this season.

Throw in other tough contests against the Chicago Bulls(52-19) and the Oklahoma City Thunder(47-34) and it would seem like the players can start making vacation plans for the end of April.

However, the Suns coach said the team isn’t giving up and will play out the season to the best of their ability.

“We’ll play out the 82 games and we’ll play all of them like this is our playoffs and then we’ll see what happens at the end of the 82 games,” said Gentry.