Home crowd fuels Phoenix Suns to Game 1 victory over Denver Nuggets
Homecourt advantage was evident at Phoenix Suns Arena on Monday night.
The energy from the sold-out crowd ignited the Suns to a 122-105 statement Game 1 win over the Denver Nuggets in the conference semifinals.
After a slow first half for Phoenix, excitement swelled in the mid-third quarter as the team took the lead on a 16-0 run in under four minutes — and the fans only got louder from there.
It seemed like the roof might blow off the top of the arena when the crowd roared after Torrey Craig dunked against his former team in the fourth quarter to give the Suns a 102-84 lead.
THE VALLEY IS HYPED RIGHT NOW. pic.twitter.com/uFCGb8Hhma
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) June 8, 2021
Bleacher Report called the home crowd “hyped,” but hyped is an understatement.
Suns center Deandre Ayton said it was the loudest environment he’s played in.
"They're helping us play like this… This was the loudest game, to be honest, that I've ever played in."
– @DeandreAyton on tonight's crowd
Hear from the team tonight! 👇
— Phoenix Suns (@Suns) June 8, 2021
The intensity isn’t surprising from a fanbase that has waited 10 years to see their team in the playoffs and is now watching them dominate as the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference.
“This crowd is crazy. It’s crazy to have the fans in there,” point guard Chris Paul said via Zoom. “The energy, there’s nothing like it. I told the guys, this is why we fought so hard during the regular season to get homecourt advantage and I think we truly had that with our fan base here.”
The social media world quickly took notice of the buzz radiating from the Suns’ stands and its impact on the game:
PHOENIX IS LIT RN 🔥
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) June 8, 2021
Siri, define playoff atmosphere.
This Phoenix crowd have been something else tonight 🔥🔥🔥 pic.twitter.com/HySlZZs0pH
— Sky Sports NBA (@SkySportsNBA) June 8, 2021
This Suns crowd is on another level right now
— Cassidy Hubbarth (@CassidyHubbarth) June 8, 2021
Purple Palace is ROCKINNNNN#RallyTheValley
— JJ Watt (@JJWatt) June 8, 2021
Inject the energy of this Phoenix Suns crowd into my veins.
— gifdsports (@gifdsports) June 8, 2021
This Phoenix crowd makes me love basketball more. This is awesome
— Andrew Schlecht (@AndrewKSchlecht) June 8, 2021
It's a mosh pit in phoenix
— jason c. (@netw3rk) June 8, 2021
This crowd sounds *incredible* on television
— Chris Herring (@Herring_NBA) June 8, 2021