The 2014 Orange Globes
January 13, 2014
While Suns.com doesn’t employ anyone as funny or talented as Ellen DeGeneres, that doesn’t mean they can’t put on a show of their own honoring the best of the 2013-14 season so far. Since it is award season and the Oscars are this weekend, Greg Esposito and Ben York have voted and present to you their honors for the best and brightest in the Suns’ world. Just don’t expect a red carpet, well-dressed people or any actual hardware to be handed out.
We’re on a budget, you know.
Best Picture: Bledsoe’s Game-Winner
Cold-blooded. That’s the only way to describe Eric Bledsoe’s picturesque (pun intended) game-winner over the Utah Jazz on Nov. 1.
The guard scored 17 of his 18 points in the final period, including all of the Suns’ last 14 points. He also added six assists, five rebounds and two steals in the win which gave the Suns a perfect 2-0 start to the season.
“It feels great,” Bledsoe said of his game-winner (not his Best Picture award). “I was preparing all summer. All summer I was working and to finally get this opportunity is a blessing.” – Ben York
Best Picture: Sorry, Blake
And the best picture goes too… Wait, I don’t even have to open the envelope. The answer is obvious. It is Miles Plumlee’s epic block against Blake Griffin at the tail end of 2013. Not only did the Suns dominate the Clippers in the game, Plumlee, or as I affectionately refer to him, SPIKE plumLEE, owned Griffin and showed off why he could probably could earn himself a spot on the Olympic volleyball team. He has become no stranger to creating posters with his dunks but it is on a rare occasion that a player creates one on defense. That’s exactly what happened on this play. – Greg Esposito
Best Comedy: Goodwin’s Photobombs
He may only be a rookie in the NBA, but Archie Goodwin has mastered the fine art of photobombing.
It all started in Flagstaff at training camp with the picture on your left, but it has since morphed into doing the “Dougie” on live television in a FOX Sports Arizona postgame interview. Watch out, Chris Bosh; Archie Goodwin is coming for your award. – Ben York
Best Comedy: P.J. Being P.J.
You want instant comedy? I dare you to look at this photo and not laugh on the spot.
Everyone knows The Garbage Man, P.J. Tucker, will do anything it takes to win but he took it to a completely new level against the Bucks. He decided to take the mop from the ballboy and clear a wet spot on the floor during a free throw break. If you were in the arena you couldn’t help but wonder what exactly was going on. When you see the photo you realize it is just P.J. being P.J. and that is just hilarious.
Best Original Score: Plumlee Denies Cousins
In this case, the award goes to Miles Plumlee for denying a score. DeMarcus Cousins stole the inbounds pass and went one a one-man fast break…until Miles Plumlee chased him down for what easily could be labeled as one of the best blocks of the 2013-14 season. – Ben York
Best Original Score: Green to the Rescue
I was originally going to go with Goran Dragic scoring in a way that would make the Tasmanian Devil. By running in circles until the opponent got dizzy. That was until Gerald Green happened.
The man with four fingers – it’s true, he’s missing his ring finger on his right hand – who was thrust into the starting lineup due to Bledsoe’s injury came up in a big way in Minnesota. On what looked to be a broken play, Green decided it was time to simply snatch the ball, rise up (if you look at the picture you can see just how high) and win the game for his team. The shot with just :3.4 seconds left on the clock tickled the twine and gave the Suns reason to celebrate. It also won Green this award.
Best Drama: 21-Point Comeback
Proving that nobody should ever count the Suns out of a game, Phoenix came back from being down 21 points to capture a 103-99 win over the Nuggets in Denver on Dec. 20.
This time, however, it was the non-starters who lead the way by scoring 64 of the team’s 103 points. Markieff Morris tallied 25 points, six rebounds, three steals and three blocks while Gerald Green added 19 points including six three-pointers. – Ben York
Best Drama: Bledsoe Against Utah
It was the second game of the season but it provided a dramatic moment that would set the tone for the rest of the season. That’s right, the Best Drama of the year goes to Eric Bledsoe’s game winner against the Jazz. At home in Game 2 he rose up, hit the shot and introduced fans to what Suns Basketball under Coach Jeff Hornacek would look like. It was the first inclination that this year’s team wouldn’t be the club everyone expected them to be. – Greg Esposito
Best Supporting Actor: Markieff Morris
The Suns are 6-1 this season when either Markieff or Marcus Morris scores 20+ points. In his role off the bench, Markieff Morris was named Western Conference Player of the Week for games played Nov. 4-10.
He averaged 22.8 points, 8.0 rebounds, 2.0 steals and shot 69.8 % from the field for the week as the Suns went 3-1 and is the first Suns player to earn NBA Player of the Week honors since Amar’e Stoudemire won the honor for Nov. 3-9, 2008. In three games from Nov. 6-10, Markieff Morris shot .750 or better from the field while attempting at least 12 field goals. In Markieff’s lifetime (since Sept. 2, 1989), only two other players in the NBA have recorded three consecutive games accomplishing this, joining Dwight Howard and Charles Barkley. – Ben York
Best Supporting Actor: Gerald Green
Great “supporting actors” make every minute they’re involved important and impactful. They create a lasting image in viewers minds while not overshadowing any of the top actors. That is exactly what Gerald Green has done for this Suns team.
Whether the moment has called for him to come off the bench or play a part-time starting role, he has left his mark. From game winning shots – see: above – to rim rocking and awe inspiring dunks, Green has acted as the Suns’ offensive defibrillator. He gives them a jump start when they’re flat lining. While is game isn’t perfect, he is perfect for what the Suns need to supplement the rest of their offense.
Best Leading Actor: Mini-Lebron
After making 38 starts in three seasons with the L.A. Clippers, Eric Bledsoe is making the most of his opportunity as a full-time starter with the Suns (even considering he is injured for the time being).
Bledsoe’s career-high for points per game for a season is 8.5 with the Clippers in 2012-13; this season he is a threat to average over 20 points. The last NBA veteran to average at least 20 points for a season after never before having averaged at least 10 points was Zach Randolph who averaged 20.1 points for Portland in 2003-04 Plus, his “Mini-Lebron” nickname isn’t just for appearances; Bledsoe’s 57 field goal percentage on drives this season trails only King James himself. – Ben York
Best Leading Actor: The Dragon
Like Christian Bale in American Hustle or Leonardo DiCaprio in Wolf of Wall Street a “leading actor” has to help elevate his team to another level and be who the rest of the cast looks to, to set the tempo for the entire production. While Hornacek has been the director, it is Goran Dragic who has been his star.
Despite sharing top billing, Dragic has emerged as an on and off the floor leader. He is putting up career numbers by finding creative ways to score and even more creative ways to feed his teammates. In a season where his numbers make him deserving of being an all-star, it also makes him deserving of being name our best leading man.