We have six teams in the Valley that we try our best to cover on the Doug & Wolf Show. Then there’s any national story that gets pushed to the forefront. I also consider the head coach of the Rattlers one of my best friends in the Valley. I’m so proud of the job that Dan Majerle is doing with Grand Canyon. Plus it is Super Bowl week now, and we’re planning for Newsmakers Week in two weeks.
These are all the things that should be on my mind. I can’t help it that I’m completely jacked up and fixed on one thing, however.
THE PHOENIX SUNS
Only the Pacers, Thunder, Spurs and Suns have won all four games in a dreaded four-games-in-five-nights portion of their season. Yes, there is a stat about winning that puts the Suns with Indiana, Oklahoma City and San Antonio.
Who do you want to talk about?
He bailed on the Lance Blanks/Lindsey Hunter duo and replaced them with two workaholics in Ryan McDonough and Jeff Hornacek. Normally, one does not recover from firing an Alvin Gentry and then dumping a respected lead assistant and a beloved Ring of Honor member, but he has. A lot of the personnel decisions that McDonough deserves credit for were set up by Babby’s cap management. Go ahead and rip him for Blanks and Hunter as long as you give him just as much credit for McDonough and Hornacek.
Miles Plumlee and Gerald Green. Should I say anything else?
Remember how the talk two years ago was about how hard it was for the Suns to find chemistry with all the personnel changes? Maybe it was the personnel.
Even when he plays bad, he contributes greatly…and he doesn’t play bad often.
He’s finally found a home. He deserves credit, as do the coaches. The key here is for him to believe in the system’s abilities to bring the best out of him and not think of himself as greater than collective good.
It looks like he’s received the message from Jeff Hornacek. His change has been dramatic and must be respected. He has changed his future in the league by changing his future with the Suns.
Leader through skill, toughness and now basketball IQ. Few players in the league have come as far as he has over the last five years. He’s no longer a piece of the Suns’ success. He’s the building block of the franchise.
NEXT SUNS CHALLENGE
Dealing with success.
The Suns are a great team when they realize they’re nothing. If the Suns play any games like they’ve accomplished something special, the Washington Wizards of the world will bring them back down to earth. They must play every game with the intent of burying their opponent.
They should draw great confidence in the comeback against Cleveland and realize they are never out of a game. However, they also have to learn that good teams are never down to Cleveland and start the game with focus and grit. Every Sun should know that if they can sweep Indiana, they can play with anybody, but it’s more than that. They must embrace why they beat Indiana.
Beating Indiana does not mean they will beat Charlotte, Chicago and Houston. The key is the energy. The key is getting out on the break when you feel like standing. Take the ball to the hole to set up the three and not chuck up threes with no ball movement. Accept you beat Indiana twice because of the way you played Indiana and not because you’re suddenly a championship team because of two January wins.
If the Suns embrace why they win, they could earn home court advantage. If Phoenix uses the Indiana victories as proof, they’ll end up proving nothing.