The last time the Phoenix Suns won on the road against the Los Angeles Lakers back on Nov. 14, 2010, Goran Dragic was a role player, Eric Bledsoe was a Clipper and the Morris Twins were still Jayhawks at the collegiate level.
Flash forward to Tuesday night, and the quartet was largely responsible for erasing all the bad memories that have transpired in the three years since for Phoenix at the Staples Center with a performance that paid homage to the high-octane Suns’ teams of years gone by.
Dragic had a game-high 31 points and five assists. Bledsoe returned to the City of Angels with an all-around great night, including 19 points, nine assists, four rebounds and all three steals. And the Morris Twins, led by arguably Marcus’ most productive night of the season, combined for 37 points and 11 rebounds off the pine, as the Suns snapped their five-game road skid against the Lakers with a 114-108 victory.
Three days between games seemed to do wonders for the Suns, as they were in attack mode from the opening whistle. Although the eight-point win might not indicate it, Phoenix looked fresh from start to finish, and for large portions of the contest had Los Angeles on their heels.
While the Suns made their presence felt early on with Dragic and Bledsoe, Marcus Morris was the straw that stirred the drink in the second half.
The third-year forward took advantage of his matchups with Xavier Henry, Shawne Williams and Nick Young, as he hit a career-high 10 field goals on just 13 attempts from the field.
Despite the win, the Suns didn’t exactly have a stellar night at the defensive end.
In just his second game of the season, Kobe Bryant, didn’t necessarily look like his former self, but he did have an effective night from the field, hitting 6-of-11 shots for a team-high 20 points. Pau Gasol also pitched in with 19 on 6-of-11 from the field, and the Lakers shot 49 percent in the loss.
Los Angeles’ bench, which leads the league among reserve units in scoring, also had 43 points Tuesday night.
Stat of the Game:
Phoenix’s 12-9 start is the team’s best through 21 games since 2009-10. That year’s squad went 15-6 en route to an appearance in the Western Conference Finals.
He Said It:
“It feels great. It brings back memories, obviously I was on the other side with the Clippers and what not. But it still feels like home.” — Eric Bledsoe on getting a win in his return to Los Angeles
– Goran Dragic has three 30-point performances in 2013-14. He had two all of last season.
– Phoenix shot 90 percent from the free throw line, including a perfect 11-of-11 from Dragic.
– P.J. Tucker has recorded back-to-back double-digit rebounding efforts for the first time in his career. Tuesday, he had a team-high 11.
The Suns return to US Airways Center Friday night with a Pacific Division showdown with newly-acquired Rudy Gay and the Sacramento Kings. Of Sacramento’s six wins this season, two have coming against Phoenix. Tip-off is at 7:00 p.m. MDT and can be heard on Arizona Sports 620.