NBA Game Summary - Phoenix at New Jersey
(Tuesday, November 4th)
Final Score: Phoenix 114, New Jersey 86
East Rutherford, NJ (Sports Network) - Raja Bell had a game-high 22 points, including a 6-of-6 performance from three-point range, and the Phoenix Suns crushed the New Jersey Nets, 114-86.
Shaquille O'Neal had 18 points and six rebounds for the Suns, who have won two in a row and three of four to open the season. Steve Nash had 12 points and 11 assists for the Suns, who shot 63.2 percent from the field and overcame 20 turnovers.
"We've got the type of team where anybody can be hot," said O'Neal. "Tonight, Raja was the high point man, he got going and hit a lot of open shots. We're not really worried about shots on this team."
Vince Carter had 19 points and five assists to pace the Nets, who have lost two straight after a season-opening win at Washington. Yi Jianlian added 15 points and eight boards. Bobby Simmons and Devin Harris had 11 points each, with Harris also doling out seven helpers.
An Amare Stoudemire three-point play, followed by a three-pointer from Matt Barnes, gave the Suns an early 16-5 lead.
The Nets fought back and made it a one-possession game late in the first, though a Grant Hill jumper gave the Suns a 32-27 lead heading into the second quarter.
Phoenix then opened a 65-55 lead at the half.
The teams traded baskets and the Suns' lead hovered around 10 points. A Carter jumper and a Simmons three-pointer pulled the Nets within 80-73 with five minutes left in the third quarter.
However, the Suns scorched the Nets and ended the stanza on a 12-4 run. Stoudemire sparked the run with a dunk and closed it out with a finger roll to send Phoenix into the final frame leading 92-77.
The Suns outscored their counterparts 19-3 over the course of the first 8:45 of the fourth quarter. Goran Dragic's layup sparked the run and Sean Singletary's jumper closed it out to give Phoenix a commanding 111-80 lead.
"They could really play," said Harris. "I mean they pound the ball in and they shot exceptionally well. Sometimes we give them too much of one, tonight we gave them both and you can't really trade baskets with them."
The game also featured the first professional matchup of the Lopez brothers - Robin of the Suns and Brook of the Nets. The duo combined for four points on 2-of-10 shooting, but they had a combined five blocks.
New Jersey had nine total points in the fourth quarter...Phoenix shot 67 percent (12-of-18) from three-point range and 70 percent (16-of-23) from the foul line. Compared to New Jersey's 34 percent (28-of-83) from the field, 32 percent (7-of-22) from beyond the arc and 89 percent (23-of-26) from the foul line...The Suns had 31 assists on their 43 field goals, whereas the Nets had only 16 assists on 28 field goals...The Suns' Alando Tucker is out for the next two to four weeks with tightness in his left hamstring...Phoenix has won five straight games versus the Nets.
11/04 23:26:54 ET