November 19, 2012: Gentry searching for right combination
Suns head coach Alvin Gentry is doing his best political impersonation: He’s promising change.
The question then becomes how much change. How much is Gentry willing to change his starting lineup?
“We’ll probably will make one. Or two. Or three. I don’t know,” he said after practice Monday. “We will make a change.”
Gentry though wasn’t prepared to announce what change or changes he and his staff have decided upon.
In the team’s first eleven games, there have been 75 different five-man combinations on the floor at any given moment. Many of those five-man units, however, saw less than five minutes of playing time.
“I’m pleased with most of the guys,” Gentry said. “I’m just not pleased with them collectively…maybe it’s just not the right combination of guys.”
Let’s examine then the combination of guys with 10 or minutes of court time together that have been successful according to nba.com/stats:
Dragic, Dudley, Beasley, Morris, Gortat are a plus-15 shooting 54.8% in 20 minutes over seven games
Dragic, Dudley, Brown, Morris, Gortat are a plus-9 shooting 54.2% in 14 minutes over three games
Telfair, Brown, Tucker, Morris, Gortat are a plus-8 shooting 42.3% in 15 minutes over four games
Dragic, Brown, Tucker, Beasley, Gortat are a plus-8 shooting 52.4% in 11 minutes over three games
The Suns have gone six straight games without a lead after the first quarter; and they’ve been outscored in their last three and four of their last five games in the third quarter.
Those slow starts—either at the beginning of games or following halftime, is what Gentry is trying to correct with a lineup change(s).
“Us having to battle our way back,” he said, “I think its cost us a few games in that we have to battle so hard to get back even.”