Grizzlies @ Suns 4-14-14, 7 PM Arizona

AfroSuns

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T'was a good season, hope they come back better and much healthier next season
 

TJ

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That one Ping pong ball better be loaded.
 

TJ

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Also. Very unceremonious end to the season. Countless double digit leads blown. Win one of those and we're still in it.
 
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Mainstreet

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The Suns have been coming up just short the last two ballgames.

They have had a fantastic season even without the playoffs.
 
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Mainstreet

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Indeed. Thank you Suns for a great entertaining season of basketball. I am really looking forward to see what we do this offseason

I am already pumped for the offseason. This season was the Suns first step forward under McDonough. Better things are yet to come.
 

desertdawg

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Much respect to Horny and the newbies, great first season. Frye, man, how can you let other people have more passion than you do? Looking forward to the next season.
 

FArting

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Stupid losses to non playoff teams would have gotten them in

Overall good season
 

Catlover

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October? How about the draft and FA? We have lots of options and lots of assets to work with. Fascinated to see what McD can do with the current resources.

This has the makings of a very fun offseason. We really ought to factor into a lot of the conversations, for both Free Agency and the Draft.
 

Hoop Head

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The Suns have been coming up just short the last two ballgames.

They have had a fantastic season even without the playoffs.

These past 2 games have basically been the playoffs. They controlled their own destiny in a way and blew it. Whether it was fatigue, coaching, inexperience, or just not having the right personnel it was disheartening to see them come up short.

Personally I think it was a mixture of inexperience, coaching, and lacking the right personnel. Had Bledsoe stayed healthy all year the team should definitely be in the playoffs but his injury was at a bad time. When he was coming back was basically the start of every teams playoff push and adding him to the lineup was enough of a coaching change that I think more should have been done because at that point Frye was off. Trying different things around then like starting Kieff and benching Frye could have made a difference. I'm not sure why Hornacek didn't make any real lineup changes when Bledsoe came back other than fitting Eric back into the fold. I think that would have been as good of time as any to try something different in the front court because the chemistry had to be reworked anyways with Bledsoe's addition. Hopefully it was more of a rookie error on Hornacek's part rather than something that will be a trend during his tenure, not changing things up when they aren't working. In his defense he didn't really have many options though when it came to front court players, he had Kieff, Frye, Marcus. Plumlee and Len were basically rookies, Plumlee just more mature and NBA ready.

I don't mean to sound too negative, it was a great season and much better than expected. I'm definitely looking forward to the future with all the picks, cap spaces, and assets available.
 

Catlover

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These past 2 games have basically been the playoffs. They controlled their own destiny in a way and blew it. Whether it was fatigue, coaching, inexperience, or just not having the right personnel it was disheartening to see them come up short.

Personally I think it was a mixture of inexperience, coaching, and lacking the right personnel. Had Bledsoe stayed healthy all year the team should definitely be in the playoffs but his injury was at a bad time. When he was coming back was basically the start of every teams playoff push and adding him to the lineup was enough of a coaching change that I think more should have been done because at that point Frye was off. Trying different things around then like starting Kieff and benching Frye could have made a difference. I'm not sure why Hornacek didn't make any real lineup changes when Bledsoe came back other than fitting Eric back into the fold. I think that would have been as good of time as any to try something different in the front court because the chemistry had to be reworked anyways with Bledsoe's addition. Hopefully it was more of a rookie error on Hornacek's part rather than something that will be a trend during his tenure, not changing things up when they aren't working. In his defense he didn't really have many options though when it came to front court players, he had Kieff, Frye, Marcus. Plumlee and Len were basically rookies, Plumlee just more mature and NBA ready.

I don't mean to sound too negative, it was a great season and much better than expected. I'm definitely looking forward to the future with all the picks, cap spaces, and assets available.

Sounds like unreasonable expectations to me. We just went 11 - 3 with Bledsoe during that run-for-the-playoffs stretch until Dragic turned his ankle. Assuming we win tomorrow we will have gone 12 - 6 to close out the season despite a tough schedule, an exhausted group of players and a lame Dragic. Maybe it would have been better if we followed your great idea and messed with our starting lineup for the last month of the season but how much screaming would you have done if we'd gone 6 - 12 once we made that change?
 

Hoop Head

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Sounds like unreasonable expectations to me. We just went 11 - 3 with Bledsoe during that run-for-the-playoffs stretch until Dragic turned his ankle. Assuming we win tomorrow we will have gone 12 - 6 to close out the season despite a tough schedule, an exhausted group of players and a lame Dragic. Maybe it would have been better if we followed your great idea and messed with our starting lineup for the last month of the season but how much screaming would you have done if we'd gone 6 - 12 once we made that change?

That would have been the safest time to do it. The starting 5 was getting changed anyways with Bledsoe's addition why not make the switch between Kieff and Frye since it was glaringly obvious Frye was the weak link. If it didn't work then switch it back but at least it was tried. The Lakers game was the most obvious point that Frye was not working as a starter, a case could be made at that point he didn't deserve to be in the rotation at all. A change should have been made at some point and I think the best time is when a change is being made already.
 

Catlover

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That would have been the safest time to do it. The starting 5 was getting changed anyways with Bledsoe's addition why not make the switch between Kieff and Frye since it was glaringly obvious Frye was the weak link. If it didn't work then switch it back but at least it was tried. The Lakers game was the most obvious point that Frye was not working as a starter, a case could be made at that point he didn't deserve to be in the rotation at all. A change should have been made at some point and I think the best time is when a change is being made already.

But the team was at least as ineffective when he went to the bench. In fact, despite Frye's weak play the past month or two we typically played noticeably better when he was on the court. All of the three and five player combo plus/minus stats show this and while it's not a perfect stat it does tell a story. Moving Keef to the starting lineup would have been disruptive to the starters and to the bench. In hindsight you could probably find a loss or two where it would have been nice to try it out but at the time we were trying to win each game.

But no matter what, we really didn't lose our playoff spot these past few weeks. Winning two-thirds of your games is usually more than enough down the stretch. As I've said many times, we lost this back in January and February when we played all those mediocre to bad teams and could only win about half our games against them. We needed both Bledsoe and Dragic and we've been a very different team when either of them has been missing or gimpy.
 

sunsfan88

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Stupid losses to non playoff teams would have gotten them in

Agreed. Even though we lost some tough ones at the end, I think its mind-blowing to think that we would be in the playoffs had we won at least half of the 14 losses against the Jazz, Lakers, Kings, Pistons, Knicks, Cavs, TWolves, Bulls (one L was when they were awful), Nets (one L was when they were awful) and Wizards (when they were bad)

Of course we beat a lot of the elite teams too. And things would be a lot different if Bledsoe never got hurt.

Its just crazy because in sports we hear HCs harp "every game matters" all the time but right here right now, we are able to see the significance it.

Even though these last 3 games were tough to watch, I feel like the other losses vs the subpar/bad teams are really what did us in when looking at the big picture.
 

Catlover

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Agreed. Even though we lost some tough ones at the end, I think its mind-blowing to think that we would be in the playoffs had we won at least half of the 14 losses against the Jazz, Lakers, Kings, Pistons, Knicks, Cavs, TWolves, Bulls (one L was when they were awful), Nets (one L was when they were awful) and Wizards (when they were bad)

Of course we beat a lot of the elite teams too. And things would be a lot different if Bledsoe never got hurt.

Its just crazy because in sports we hear HCs harp "every game matters" all the time but right here right now, we are able to see the significance it.

Even though these last 3 games were tough to watch, I feel like the other losses vs the subpar/bad teams are really what did us in when looking at the big picture.

I agree with much of this except the Chicago comment. They weren't awful, they were expected to be awful. The win against us was the beginning of their turnaround following the trade of Deng.

To me the real killers (beyond the Lakers loss) were the losses at Detroit, New York, Utah and the home losses to Washington, Minnesota and Cleveland. All but the LA and Cleveland loss came with Bledsoe out. I write the Brooklyn and Sacramento losses off to the huge mismatch problems we have with them but most of the games listed here should have been wins.
 

KloD

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Agreed. Even though we lost some tough ones at the end, I think its mind-blowing to think that we would be in the playoffs had we won at least half of the 14 losses against the Jazz, Lakers, Kings, Pistons, Knicks, Cavs, TWolves, Bulls (one L was when they were awful), Nets (one L was when they were awful) and Wizards (when they were bad)

Of course we beat a lot of the elite teams too. And things would be a lot different if Bledsoe never got hurt.

Its just crazy because in sports we hear HCs harp "every game matters" all the time but right here right now, we are able to see the significance it.

Even though these last 3 games were tough to watch, I feel like the other losses vs the subpar/bad teams are really what did us in when looking at the big picture.

That's all good and fine, but are you suggesting this team took games off? I watched most games this season and although they were inconsistent at times, i never believed it to be a lack of effort. Sometimes teams have off nights, but I don't believe in this teams case it was ever because they didn't see the big picture.
 

Catlover

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That's all good and fine, but are you suggesting this team took games off? I watched most games this season and although they were inconsistent at times, i never believed it to be a lack of effort. Sometimes teams have off nights, but I don't believe in this teams case it was ever because they didn't see the big picture.

Yeah I never saw a lack of effort. A lack of focus, probably, but that happens to every team. The better teams keep those games to a minimum, something I'm sure Jeff will strive for in the future.
 

sunsfan88

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That's all good and fine, but are you suggesting this team took games off? I watched most games this season and although they were inconsistent at times, i never believed it to be a lack of effort. Sometimes teams have off nights, but I don't believe in this teams case it was ever because they didn't see the big picture.

I'm just saying that Hornacek has said it timeless times that the Suns sometimes go into games expecting to win by just showing up.

I think there have been games this season in which we came in with little to no energy.
 

KloD

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I'm just saying that Hornacek has said it timeless times that the Suns sometimes go into games expecting to win by just showing up.

I think there have been games this season in which we came in with little to no energy.

Perhaps, I hadn't heard him say that. Remember that Dragic struggled last year as he learned to play starter minutes. Most of the guys this year were going through the same thing. So I'm not sure it was a lack of energy, but more a lack of how to spread that energy over the number of minutes played. Someone off the bench can go out there and give a 100% for 10 minutes a game, but when you play 30+ minutes a game you need to learn when to go 100% and when to dial back or you will not have anything left to give in the 4th quarter. I think we saw Bledsoe going through that prior to his injury. He had nothing left in the 4th. I often roll my eyes when I hear some of the critique on this board about Bledsoe, but they seem to forget many of the same issues we saw him having, we also saw from Dragic last year. I expect to see far better game management (energy wise) from many of the guys on our roster next season. Don't forget many of them had never played near the amount of minutes they did this season.
 
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devilalum

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IMO the team as is could win 55 games next year IF everybody stayed healthy all year.
Its gonna be fun to see what our GM does over the summer. I'd definitely prefer that they stick with what they've got than overpay for someone like Rudy Gay.
 
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