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Suns coach Gentry not ready to panic

The Phoenix Suns are off to a nightmarish start to the
season.

After getting manhandled by the Philadelphia 76ers at home
last night, 103-83 — their second home loss in as many
games — one has to wonder if it’s time for the Suns to
press the panic button.

The warning signs go far beyond the 0-2 start the Suns
have suffered. Nevermind that they’re off to their worst
start in 15 years. The greater cause for concern stems
from the anemic performance of a usually high powered
offense.

“We’ve got to play ourselves into consistency,” Gentry
said. “We are struggling offensively and we haven’t been a
team that has struggled offensively, so we’ve just got to
get back into a rhythm.”

At the center of the team’s offensive woes is superstar
guard Steve Nash, who struggled mightily in Wednesday’s
blowout against the Sixers.

Nash, now in his 16th season, suffered one of the worst
games of his storied career — shooting 2-11 from the
field to finish the game with a meager 4 points and only 1
assist.

The rest of the offense wasn’t immune to the scoring
deficiency Wednesday night. After halftime, the Suns
missed their first nine shots to start the second half and
watched as the Sixers exploded for 19 unanswered points.

However, head coach Alvin Gentry doesn’t see any point in
stewing over the team’s inauspicious start.

“There’s no reason to panic,” Gentry stated. “We can’t
panic anyway. That’s not going to get us anywhere. We just
have to try to stay consistent and keep working hard and
try to get better. That’s got to be our message to the
team. And it’s we, it’s not them.”

Gentry signaled that his troops are in this together for
the long haul. He stressed the importance of improving
upon all aspects of their performance, from play-calling
to execution.

“We are just not making shots and that’s a big thing.
You’ve got to put the ball in the basket and we haven’t
been able to do that.”

It’s not that the team is having trouble getting open
looks, though.

“We had 11 shots that we considered really good shots and
we made two of them,” Gentry said of the early parts of
Wednesday’s loss. “The only reason we stayed in the game
was because we were pretty good defensively.”

Some would argue the Suns defense needs as much work as
the sputtering offense, but for now, the team is trying to
come to grips with their lackluster start.

“We don’t want to be 0-2 at home,” Gentry said. “The
reality of it is — that’s what we are.”