The Phoenix Suns are struggling defensively and as a result have had a slow start to the season and after their latest defeat went to 4-7.
The Suns have now lost three games on the bounce which marks the second worst start through 11 games for 15 years.
The main problem it appears to the Suns struggles this season is the poor start they make to games. By the time they find a run in games it appears that it is too late and 10 of the first 11 games this season they have found themselves down by 10.
Going down and having to come back is hard for any team especially teams which have been put together nicknamed ‘misfits.’
Despite the defensive frailties Alvin Gentry’s side are having, offensively they are still clocking up points, averaging 24.7 in the first quarter and 27.2 in the second. At first inspection there doesn’t seem to be much wrong with the stats they are clocking up early on in games, shooting 44.9% from inside the arc in the first quarter, with 30 offensive rebounds to go with. These stats indicate that teams should really have a lead going into the second half, but it remains a struggle for the Suns to do so, and not be in a position where they are at least 10 points down.
While the offense might be clicking, it is the defense which is the major problem, in four of the opening 11 games they have given up a double digit lead including an incredible 21 point deficit against the Cleveland Cavaliers which they ended up winning.
While the Suns score on average 24.7 in the first quarter, unfortunately they are allowing opponents to score 28.6 in the first, with 52.1% shooting inside the perimeter and 52.4% shooting with three point shots.
The Suns have made a bad start to the season and this can be down to a number of reasons. Other than the fact defensively they have been extremely weak, the likes of Marcus Beasley and Jared Dudley have almost been non- performers.
The slow starts to games is a huge problem for the Suns, but there are other reasons for their poor start, it’s their all round game which needs improving. They are ranked 13th in field goals, 22nd in three point shot, 21st in assist per games and 17th for efficiency.
With 11 games in it might still be relatively early in the season but Phoenix fans have had a taste for what they are likely to expect to see throughout the rest of the campaign.