Suns Spoil Gordonís Career Performance
Phoenix 118, Chicago 101
PHOENIX, Feb. 4 (Ticker) --Shawn Marion and Steve Nash continue to shine under Mike D'Antoni's run-and-gun style of basketball.
Marion registered 26 points and 11 rebounds and Nash added 21 points and seven assists as the Phoenix Suns posted a 118-101 victory over the Chicago Bulls, who received a career-high 39 points from Ben Gordon.
"It's pretty fun when all the balls are going in and everybody is getting touches," said Nash, who won the MVP award under D'Antoni last season. "That's pretty nice and that is what we strive for as a team and those type of moments are memorable over the course of a season."
The Bulls trailed, 52-50, at half before the Suns pulled away by scoring a season-best 38 points in the third period, making 14-of-21 shots
"We came out and opened the game up on both ends of the floor and that helped us get the win tonight," said Marion, who collected his league-leading 36th double-double. "We opened the game up in the second half, got into a rhythm and started doing what we do best."
"Sometimes we hit a stretch where we shoot 60 percent like we did in the third quarter and we came home with it," D'Antoni said.
Chicago made just 8-of-24 shots (33 percent) overall in the third quarter.
"It wasn't even a quarter," Chicago coach Scott Skiles said. "It was about five or six minutes of them having a lot of energy a lot of life and moving the ball around. They got a bunch of guys who shoot the ball with confidence. They knocked them down and we didn't have much response."
The Suns nailed five shots from the arc in the third to open a commanding 90-70 advantage and cruised thereafter.
"They just came out and jumped on us and it just carried over for the rest of the game," Gordon said. "A team like that, they have so many good perimeter shooters you can't really make that many defensive mistakes out there on the perimeter, they just shot the heck out of the ball."
Gordon was the lone bright spot for the Bulls, connecting on 14-of-21 shots, including a career-high nine 3-pointers. The second-year guard also pulled down eight rebounds and handed out five assists.
"I wish we could've done more in the second half to stay in the game," Gordon said. "Points don't really mean anything in a loss. I missed a lot of shots I don't normally miss. (Saturday) I was in a rhythm a lot more and my shots came in rhythm and I wasn't hesitating on any shots. That was probably the major difference."
Luol Deng scored 17 points and Mike Sweetney contributed 14 off the bench for Chicago, which shot 44 percent (40-of-90) and fell to 0-3 on their season-high seven-game road trip.
The Suns, who returned home from a 4-2 road trip, posted their eighth consecutive home win against the Bulls.
"It's important, It's not always easy to come back from that big a trip and you find a lack of energy and enthusiasm," Nash said. "You kind of have a letdown after that much traveling. Needless to say, it was important for us to really come back and we did."
Chicago not won here since Nov. 20, 1996 - when Michael Jordan was still playing.