PHOENIX, Dec. 18 (Ticker) --
Phoenix Suns point guard Steve Nash
a team make history again.
had a season-high 36 points and 14 rebounds and
Nash added 13 and 11 assists as the Suns extended their winning
streak to eight games with a 110-96 victory over the Washington
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Phoenix has won 17 of its last 18 games to improve to a
league-best 21-3 this season. The Suns kept pace with the best
start in the NBA since a Nash-led Dallas squad opened 22-3 two
"There are some similarities to that Dallas team," Nash said.
"We are both high-scoring teams (that are) difficult to defend,
but we have our own identity. We are more athletic and more
The Suns held a one-point lead with 4:31 left in the second
quarter before using a 10-3 run to extend their lead to 53-45 at
, who got extra playing time due to
foul trouble, scored eight points during the surge
and matched a career-high with 17 before injuring his finger on
a dunk in the fourth quarter.
"Amare was struggling a bit, so I wanted to come off the bench
with a lot of energy," Hunter said. "To win a championship or go
deep in the playoffs, we need a 10-man rotation and I think we
have more than capable guys. We want to show people that our
bench is a good bench."
Marion, who was 13-of-18 from the floor, scored 15 points in the
third quarter. With Phoenix holding a 61-53 lead at the 7:14
mark, he singlehandedly doubled the Suns margin, scoring eight
consecutive points over the next two minutes.
"I wanted it a little bit more," Marion joked. "Everybody was
tired but we sucked it up a bit. It was a team thing."
Nash has dished out 10 or more assists in eight straight games.
He has 13 double-doubles this season, second on the team to
had five of Phoenix's 13 3-pointers and
scored 19 points for the Suns, who had four players in double
had 25 points and nine rebounds and
and Larry Hughes each scored 19 points for Washington,
which is 1-1 on its five-game road trip.
"We thought after their first run, they would catch warm. They
couldn't shoot any better then that," Arenas said. "At least
one of their players that was out there was hot and they kept
drilling us all night."
The Suns improved to 13-1 in back-to-back situations. They did
not win their 21st game last season until March 3 in their 62nd
"They are a wonderful team and a wonderful team to watch,"
Wizards coach Eddie Jordan said. "Steve Nash
orchestrator. They've got shooters and are unselfish."