The Phoenix Suns’ 4-0 dismantling of the Denver Nuggets in their NBA Western Conference semifinal series was an emphatic statement of intent.
Proving what a force they are to be reckoned with, they had far too much quality for the Nuggets to contend with, as they made it seven consecutive playoff wins.
Defending exceptionally to keep quiet two of the Nuggets’ stars in Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray, they worked as a collective unit and stuck to the task at hand with dedication. Forcing frequent turnovers, limiting the success of the Nuggets’ shooting and restricting them from implementing their mechanics effectively, Chris Paul credited the Suns’ coaching staff for their stopping prowess. “Shout-out to our coaches,” Paul asserted.
“We’re prepared for every game. Win or lose, one thing we won’t be is underprepared. And just attention to detail — we have slip-ups here and there, but the signs of a good team is when you can lock in defensively. And that’s where we try to hang our hat.”
With their starting five of Deandre Ayton, Mikal Bridges, Jae Crowder, Paul and Devin Booker all defending excellently, this aspect of their game has been the foundation for their tremendous form.
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Their offense has importantly been at a high level too, where scoring machines Paul and Booker have propelled them to great heights with their shooting and intelligence. While Ayton, Crowder and Bridges have also proved their worth, their schemes have been just as crucial towards their dangerous attack. “It’s very impressive how locked in we are as a unit,” Jae Crowder said. “All five guys on the court are on the same page at all times. I think that’s key.”
Looking right on top of their game and firing on all cylinders, the well rested Suns are rated as the second favourites at $3.75 behind the Brooklyn Nets at $2.50 to be crowned Champions.
Upon considering they were priced at $17 to win the Championship at the start of May, the amazing drop in the odds is a testament to how wonderfully they’ve been playing on both sides of the ball.
Their next opponents will certainly have to be at their best to stop them to avoid being comprehensively brushed aside like the Nuggets were.
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