MIAMI — The Phoenix Suns are figuring issues out. The Miami Warmth had higher do the identical quickly.
Eric Gordon scored 23 factors off the bench, Devin Booker scored 22 and the Suns added to Miami’s woes with a 118-105 win Monday evening, handing the Warmth their seventh consecutive loss within the NBA.
Kevin Durant scored 20 and Bradley Beal had 19 for the Suns, who’re 8-2 of their final 10 video games and swept the Warmth for simply the second time within the final 17 seasons. The opposite was 2020-21, when Phoenix made the NBA Finals.
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— Phoenix Suns (@Suns) January 30, 2024
“Attempting to get wins, that’s the secret,” Booker stated after the Suns obtained a break up of their Florida back-to-back following a Sunday evening loss in Orlando. “Now we have some issues to determine defensively and we’ll try this. This was an excellent win at present, on a back-to-back, towards a extremely good workforce.”
Booker, Durant and Beal every had seven assists for Phoenix, which led by as many as 28 and took a 100-74 lead into the ultimate quarter. The Suns — the NBA’s worst workforce by way of fourth-quarter level differential — noticed the lead get minimize to 115-105 with 1:33 left, however Miami didn’t rating once more.
Jimmy Butler scored a game-high 26 factors for Miami, which was 24-16 and fifth within the Japanese Convention simply two weeks in the past. The Warmth are actually 24-23 and mired within the play-in match vary, three video games behind Indiana within the loss column for the sixth and closing assured playoff berth.
Terry Rozier scored 21 and Tyler Herro had 17 for Miami.
“I simply wish to see the hassle, the toughness, the physicality, the pressure, the a number of efforts to get by means of this to see what’s on the opposite facet,” Warmth coach Erik Spoelstra stated. “We all know that there’s one thing that probably will be nice on the opposite facet. However you bought to undergo it. You’ve obtained to undergo the fires collectively and these uncomfortable instances collectively.”
Beal performed with a masks to guard his damaged nostril. The Suns misplaced starter Grayson Allen within the first half to a sprained proper ankle. Suns coach Frank Vogel stated X-rays had been detrimental.
Phoenix obtained 48 bench factors.
“Happy with these guys,” Vogel stated. “That’s what it ought to appear like on the second evening of a back-to-back.”
It’s the primary seven-game shedding streak for Miami since a seven-game slide late within the 2007-08 season, the season earlier than Spoelstra took over for Pat Riley. That ’07-08 workforce — which completed 15-67 and, to place it charitably, wasn’t precisely making an attempt to win numerous video games — had 4 such streaks of seven or extra losses that season.
Earlier than that, the final time a Miami workforce misplaced seven straight was the beginning of the 2003-04 season, when Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem had been rookies. That workforce went on to make the Japanese Convention semifinals.
There have been loads of groups that misplaced seven video games — or extra — in a row and made the playoffs. However none of these has gone on to win a playoff sequence since Portland in 2016. And no workforce has ever misplaced seven consecutive video games in what turned a championship season; 4 eventual champions misplaced six in a row on their option to the title, most not too long ago when Dallas topped Miami in 2011.
“Now we have to recover from this hurdle,” Spoelstra stated, “a method or one other.”
Suns: Go to Brooklyn on Wednesday.
Warmth: Host Sacramento on Wednesday.