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Jae Crowder: Suns’ communication key to 6-game playoff win streak

Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton (22) and forward Jae Crowder (99) celebrate during the second half of Game 1 of an NBA basketball second-round playoff series against the Denver Nuggets, Monday, June 7, 2021, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Matt York)

The Phoenix Suns have been riding high on a six-game playoff win streak that has left them with a 3-0 series lead over the Denver Nuggets, one win away from a berth in the Western Conference Finals.

One of the most integral parts of the team is veteran Jae Crowder.

Crowder is just in his first season with the team but said he sees something in this group that sets it apart from the other playoff teams he has been part of.

Actually, it’s more of something he hears rather than sees.

“I think the No. 1 thing for us is communication,” Crowder told the media on Saturday.

He added that since day one of training camp, head coach Monty Williams and veteran leaders on the team like Chris Paul and Devin Booker stressed the importance of having tough conversations for moments like road playoff games.

“I think you see a lot of guys prepared because we have those conversations,” Crowder said. “It may be uncomfortable at times but it needs to be said and I think that allows growth. So that’s what you’re getting right now.”

After making the finals last season with the Miami Heat, Crowder has his sights set for more.

“The goal is not done yet,” he said. “We’re not satisfied where we are right now, not one bit.

“We feel like we want more, we’re itching for more.”

When Crowder takes the floor in Game 4 in Denver, it will be his 82nd career playoff game, making it a full season’s worth of playoff experience for the 30-year-old.

While Crowder is relying on his experience, he said the whole team is doing what it takes to win playoff games.

“It’s like clockwork right now,” Crowder said. “We’re just checking the boxes, finishing, doing everything hard and its working out for us.”


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