Quantcast
NBA / Sep 24, 2009 / 11:40 am

The Phoenix Suns Are The Worst Defensive Team In The NBA

amare-stoudemire-02

OK, so the Shaq and Terry Porter experiment failed and now the Phoenix Suns are back to runnin’ and gunnin’ full time. Over the summer, Steve Kerr re-signed the quarterback behind the seven-seconds-or-less offense Steve Nash, re-upped with Grant Hill and acquired two slim and athletic big men in Channing Frye and lottery-pick Earl Clark. Under coach Alvin Gentry (who was one of D’Antoni’s assistants in Phoenix), the team will try to trying to rewind time back to the 2004-’05 season and attempt to put up 115 or more points per game.

The problem is, this isn’t the same Suns squad from five years back that had Nash, Amar’e, Leandro Barbosa, Joe Johnson, Shawn Marion and Quentin Richardson. This year’s team has an aging Nash and Hill, an unmotivated Jason Richardson and a bunch of space fillers. Yeah the Suns will rack up triple digit points nightly, but they are a nothing but a possible eighth seed at best this year because they are horrible defensively.

Last year, Phoenix led the league in points at 109.4 ppg, but their opponents weren’t far behind. Despite reverting back to a high-octane offense after Porter was fired in February, the Suns still missed the playoffs with a 46-36 record. In fairness, Stoudemire got hurt and the Suns finished respectable under Gentry. In 2008-’09 the Suns gave up the third most points in the league at 107.51 ppg – and that was with Shaq on the team.

The Suns have not had one capable perimeter defender ever since Raja Bell and Boris Diaw left the team. Jason Richardson, Stoudemire and Barbosa are all great athletes but do not commit themselves on that end. Both Nash and Hill are aging and have never been known for shutting people down. Despite being nearly seven-feet, Channing Frye is a terrible rebounder and shot-blocker. Louis Amundson is the one solid defender on the team. He’s got that Mark Madsen and Eduardo Najara hustle to him. Second-year center Robin Lopez has the size to be a good defender one day but is far from it right now.

Even with O’Neal, the Suns were just an average rebounding team and had a defensive rating of 111.6 (26th in the league). Now that he’s in Cleveland and Amar’e or Lopez will start at the center, teams will now be able to get transition buckets, second chance points and plenty of dribble penetration off of the Suns this season. While the Suns have the fire power to outscore a lot of teams, they don’t stand a chance against the leagues better teams like the Spurs, Lakers, Magic, Cavs and Celtics.

Are the Suns the worst defensive team in the NBA?

Follow Dime on Twitter at @DIMEMag.

Follow Gerald Narciso on Twitter at @Gerald_Narciso.

Become a fan of Dime Magazine on Facebook HERE.

Related Posts with Thumbnails
  • robmo35

    I think Detroit, Milwaukee, New York, and Minnesota may have something to say about that

  • Scott

    Jared Dudley can play D… I think. lol.

  • Chris

    definitly NY

  • http://www.btv.com.ph/ sh!tfaced

    Not if Don Nelson and the Golden State Warriors are still in the NBA…

  • Kermit the Washington

    Wow, word Dime? Word?

    In other news, Terrell Owens is a cocky player, Kobe Bryant doesn’t like playing with Shaq, and ARod makes too much money.

  • Aaron

    It’s pretty obvious you don’t watch the suns very much. While I’ll give you Nash and stoudemire in terms of poor d, there are several guys including grant hill, Jared Dudley, goran dragic and now Earl Clark that can d up. I’m not saying we’re the bad boys or anything but we could be ok on d. Also, take into account pace factor when we score at that clip and then what the opponent scores.

  • Big Bad Wolf

    Worst Defensive Team? The Knicks… I’m from NY and you should see how those douche bags defend… tsk… no swagger, no intensity, no wonder people are asking for a refund…

    ISIAH!!!! you li’l piece of CR*P!!!! give me back my money!!!!! it’s still is your fault… he’s the reason why there’s a lot of suffering in the world. blame isiah!!! hahahaha!

    *inspired by http://www.blametracy.com*
    T-mac haters website…

  • Big Bad Wolf

    plus when they make baskets, they act like they friggin’ won the game… but while celebrating… the other team is already attackin’ on the other end. tsk..

  • Eric

    Jared Dudley, Louis Amundson, Earl Clark are good defenders
    Robin Lopez has the potential to become a good defender this year, so as Goran Dragic. The Suns aren’t so bad with defenders, the problem is that they are all reserves

  • Chaos

    NY has that title and the Bucks arent far behind but Gentry needs to get in their asses on D because they have some good athletes there.

  • Gunner J. Matthews

    And this is news how????
    I thought everybody knew that

  • Ekstor

    Grant Hill was offensively raw but a defensive dynamo coming into the league (anyone remember him holding down Glenn Robinson in the tourney one game after Big Dog went off for 40+). Yes, I realize he averaged 20+ ppg before getting hurt, but he was more of a slasher back then than a shooter. So I’m not sure that any statement of him never being known for his defense is accurate.

  • Gerald Narciso

    I think the style of play makes them worse than they are defensively. You can’t tell me losing Shaq isn’t going to kill your interior defense when you are already a team that gives up so many points and are ranked as low as they are in the defensive ratings.

  • dial up

    Shaq played no defense last year. Whatsoever. He put up his stats and bounds, but he wasnt winning no games. He is the slowest player in the pick n roll.

  • http://www.nbadraftdaycountdown.com Aaron

    Exactly dial. Having someone that can actually potentially rotate on pick and rolls is huge. We have a lot of potential defensively and I think you’re short changing us a bit and going with the cliche Suns argument.

  • Suns Fan Ryan

    You are way off ….. The Suns are not the worst defensive team in the NBA, please read my article

    http://bleacherreport.com/articles/260804-the-phoenix-suns-are-not-the-worst-defensive-team-in-the-nba

  • hb in az

    Ditto on most of these posts as well. Now I am not saying that the Suns are going to be in the top ten defensively, maybe the bottom ten, but def not the worst. Especially w/ teams like GS, Mil, Sac, Min, etc… At post 12 G Hill won defensive player of the year (not sure what year) while at Duke, and was prob the Suns best defender (not saying too much)last year. Also, don’t sleep on Dudley he is gonna be crucial this year as well as Sweet Lou and I see big things for Clark too. So lighten up a lil on the Suns Gerald, remember we do have one of the top five douche GM/Owner (Kerr/Sarver) combos in the L.

  • hb in az

    Ditto on most of these posts as well. Now I am not saying that the Suns are going to be in the top ten defensively, maybe the bottom ten, but def not the worst. Especially w/ teams like GS, Mil, Sac, Min, etc… At post 12 G Hill won defensive player of the year (not sure what year) while at Duke, and was prob the Suns best defender (not saying too much)last year. Also, don’t sleep on Dudley he is gonna be crucial this year as well as Sweet Lou and I see big things for Clark too. So lighten up a lil on the Suns Gerald, remember we do have one of the top five douche GM/Owner (Kerr/Sarver) combos in the L.

  • hb in az

    Ditto on most of these posts as well. Now I am not saying that the Suns are going to be in the top ten defensively, maybe the bottom ten, but def not the worst. Especially w/ teams like GS, Mil, Sac, Min, etc… At post 12 G Hill won defensive player of the year (not sure what year) while at Duke, and was prob the Suns best defender (not saying too much)last year. Also, don’t sleep on Dudley he is gonna be crucial this year as well as Sweet Lou and I see big things for Clark too. So lighten up a lil on the Suns Gerald, remember we do have one of the top five douche GM/Owner (Kerr/Sarver) combos in the L.

  • hb in az

    Sorry for the repeat, comment did no first time, go thru the first time feel free to delete the extras.

  • Suns Fan Ryan

    You are way off with this one

  • karizmatic

    Golden State is the worst defensive team in the league.

  • karizmatic

    @ Ekstor,

    When Grant Hill was young he always had the rep of being an athlete who potentially could be a good defender if he dedicated himself to it, unfortunately he suffered several injuries before being able to add that part of the game to his repertoire, thus he never was actually known for being a defensive dynamo.

  • http://dimemag.com Ben York

    I have to chip in on this one and defend the Suns…

    I’m not saying they are great by any means, but their pace of play dictates much of their “bad” stats defensively. They actually hold opponents to a fairly low shooting % considering the pace.

    Also, the Suns are actually a better defensive team without Shaq and his mediocre interior defense.

    The Warriors are a better defensive team than the Suns? Not sure about that one…

  • money

    golden state is pretty bad

  • Remembering ’70

    Worst dime post ive ever seen

  • Skywalker

    Suns are third worst.

    NY definitely the worst, they don’t even think of playing D.

    GState second. They don’t play D but they actually have good defenders.

  • Pdxballer

    awesome comments

    hilarious

  • Pdxballer

    awesome comments

    hilarious

  • halosbenji

    Are you f*cking serious!?

  • sunsdawg

    AS of Nov 12, 2009.

    Do you still think the Suns are the worst defensive team in the league?