Game tips at 8:00 pm ET
Phoenix: 10-3 (4-0 home)
Pistons: 5-8 (2-4 road)
You could make a case that Phoenix is a championship contender. Their margin of victory is impressive, considering they have played two-thirds of their games on the road. After an absurd experiment in grinding half-court play, Steve Nash and company are running free and looking great.
The Suns win by, well, scoring. They shoot frequently, yes, but also efficiently. The top three scorers (Nash, Amare Stoudemire and Jason Richardson) are shooting better than 50%. As a team, the Suns shoot a ridiculous 43%. They also get to the line frequently for such an up and down team.
Defensively, the Suns are one of the worst teams in the league. They rank 25th in defensive efficiency, and certainly miss stalwarts like Kurt Thomas and Raja Bell on that end. They give almost as much as they get, but they get an awful lot.
A Utah-Sunday doubleheader? Yikes. Here's hoping the team spent the night in Utah, as opposed to Phoenix.
Keys for Detroit
Crash the boards: Actually, the Pistons are a respectable (albeit unimpressive) 18th in rebounding rate. If they can crack the top 15, I'll retire this one.
Perimeter D: The Suns can devastate defenses by pouring in back-to-back buckets from the perimeter. The best solution is to force Steve Nash to look for other options. He will find them from time to time, obviously, but he'll turn the ball over as well.
Disrupt the flow: A potent half-court attack, with numerous players who can attack the basket, might just be kryptonite to an offense that is more than happy to give up an occassional open jumper.
Question of the Game
What happened to our depth? At the beginning of the season, this looked like a team that went 10 deep. After lackluster performances by the likes of Chris Wilcox and Austin Daye, and injuries to Rip and Tay, we're suddenly looking short-staffed.