By Ben York, Suns.com Winners of four of their last five games, the 9-7 Suns return home to US Airways Center to again face the Utah Jazz on Saturday, November 30. The game will be televised on FOX Sports Arizona at 7:00pm and fans can listen to the radio broadcast on Arizona Sports 620. Click through to see five things Suns fans should watch for during #SunsVsJazz.
Scoring Opportunities On Friday against Utah, Six Suns players scored in double figures, led by Markieff Morris (23 points) and Goran Dragic (19 points, nine assists. Plumlee added his seventh double-digit rebounding effort of the season with 15 points and 10 rebounds. Their pace of play improved with Bledsoe’s return, and they’ll look to replicate last night’s performance again against the Jazz at home tonight.
Forcing Turnovers Utah averages about 17 turnovers a game, fourth –worst in the NBA. The Suns have struggled with turning the ball over all year long, but have made strides over the past few games en route to winning four of their last five contests. Phoenix will need to play aggressive, smart defense against a hungry Jazz team. If that happens, forcing turnovers will be a natural byproduct.
Owning the Glass One major opportunity for the Suns against Utah is on the boards. The Jazz give up the sixth most rebounds in the NBA at just over 45 per game. Furthermore, they currently rank fifth to last in the league in total rebounds. If the Suns can control the boards, it will also mean they are forcing Utah into difficult shots which will also allow them to get out in transition.
Sustained Energy After tonight’s game, the Suns don’t play again until Tuesday which gives them two full days off. Having a home game on the second night of a back-to-back typically proves to benefit the home team due to the atmosphere and boost from the crowd. Still, the Jazz are a sneaky team and if they come out with more energy than the Suns, they’ll certainly be a difficult team to beat.
Catching Fire Eric Bledsoe caught fire in the fourth quarter earlier in the year at home versus the Jazz. Who will be the player to step up this time? If the past few games are any indication, Goran Dragic, Channing Frye, Gerald Green and the Morris twins have been carrying the bulk of the scoring load. Like Friday night’s game, if one or more Suns can get hot from the field – especially in the second half – it usually means things are clicking.