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Suns Strokes: Poor third quarter dooms Suns in Orlando

Sure, you could read the box score and know who won, but we all know that won’t tell you everything that happened in a basketball game. So, we will give you Suns Strokes providing you with the analysis, quotes and notes from the Suns’ loss against the Orlando Magic on November 4. Final Score: Magic 115, Suns 94

The Story:

The Phoenix Suns fell 115-94 in Orlando Sunday night to go to 1-2 on the season.

Hot shooting and stingy defense paced Phoenix to a 10-point halftime lead, but a 40-point third quarter by a short-handed Magic squad turned a good effort by the Suns through 30 minutes into a blowout loss.

The Good:

Heading into the season, one of the big concerns for the Suns defensively was their ability to block shots. For the third straight game, Phoenix made that department look more like a strength than a weakness. On Sunday, Marcin Gortat’s four blocks led the way and on the night the Suns finished with 10.

Phoenix’s frontcourt of Michael Beasley, Luis Scola and Gortat proved to be the only three offensive threats in Orlando. The trio combined for 60 points and 24 rebounds.

The Bad:

For the second straight game, Jared Dudley was non-existent at the offensive end — finishing with three points on 1-for-4 shooting. The Suns’ starting shooting guard hasn’t lived up to his position. He has only attempted eight shots in his last two contests.

The Suns gave up too many good looks in the second half, but it was really the offense that failed Alvin Gentry’s squad over the final 24 minutes. After going up 68-54, Phoenix missed six of their next seven shots, which allowed the Magic to fight their way back in the game.

Phoenix also struggled on the glass, giving up 13 offensive boards.


The beginning of the game had a rather up-and-down pace, but following the first quarter the two teams were kept off the court for 12 minutes following an issue with one of the nets. After the delay, the game took on a more choppy tone for the remaining three quarters.

Phoenix has now lost five straight games in Orlando. The team’s last win over the Magic on the road was back in November 2007.

The Magic didn’t take a ton of three-point shots on Sunday, but they made them count. In the win, Orlando made 9-for-11 from three-point range.

Second-year shooting guard E’Twaun Moore had one of the best games of his young career. The former star from Purdue had 15 points on 6-for-9 shooting.

Up Next:

The Suns travel to Miami to take on the reigning NBA champion Miami Heat Monday at 5:00 p.m.