Suns.com Key Three of the Week (Nov. 4 - Nov. 10)
If the playoffs started today, the Suns would hold homecourt advantage as a No. 3 seed in the West.
Such are the lofty heights Phoenix has reached in the season’s first two weeks of action. The Suns are defending well and finishing better, all while leading the league in fast break points.
We look at the three individuals most responsible for last week’s success, which included three wins and a three-point loss at San Antonio.
Kevin Love. Blake Griffin. Tim Duncan. Dwight Howard. Everyone else. Those are the big men Morris beat out for Western Conference Player of the Week honors.
The shock wears off quickly when the stats are revealed. 22.8 points, 8.0 rebounds, 2.0 steals and a scorching 69.8 percent shooting percentage in four games.
Morris credited his resurgence to his recent goal of getting to the free throw line often. That has resulted in his off-the-charts accuracy, as well as a very selective average of one three-point attempt per contest in those four games.
Most importantly, Morris’ production has given offensive life to a bench unit that once lacked only that. If he can put up anywhere close to these numbers for the rest of the season, don’t be surprised if Sixth Man of the Year consideration comes his way.
The fourth-year guard is in danger of making his name a weekly tradition on this list. That’s what happens when you lead a team in points. And assists. And steals. And free throw attempts.
Bledsoe’s value has risen even further thanks to increased efficiency. Last week he hit 29-of-46 from the field, and is shooting a remarkable 57.1 percent from the field despite his perimeter player status.
Finally, his fourth-quarter scoring continues to lift the Suns when it matters most. Bledsoe is second only to Kevin Durant in that category with 8.7 points per game in that period. He’s hitting 87 percent of his fourth-quarter attempts, and his assist numbers (1.9, 11th) are just outside the top 10 in the league as well.
You could justify Miles Plumlee or Marcus Morris in this spot just as easily, but Green’s combination of outside shooting and inside slashing has provided the unpredictable perimeter score option Phoenix needed.
Green’s perimeter touch has fallen off somewhat, but he’s adjusted admirably since hitting six three-pointers at New Orleans on Tuesday. Since that game, the seventh-year swingman is still shooting 17-of-37 (46 percent) despite missing 11 of his 16 attempts from beyond the arc.
His highlight dunks make up for part of that, but he’s also been effective on mid-range post-ups over smaller defenders. On the other end of the court, Green has logged at least one block or one steal in every game since the opener.