NBA News Wire

Wizards 101, Suns 95

Alan Draper profile picture
Sports Editor
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PHOENIX — Forward Trevor Ariza scored 23 points and guard Bradley Beal had nine points in the fourth quarter, including two late baskets, as the Washington Wizards held Phoenix to 38 points in the second half and beat the Suns 101-95 on Friday night.

Guard John Wall had 18 points and 12 assists and forward Nene added 18 points as the Wizards forced 21 turnovers — seven in the third quarter — and pulled out a game that featured 19 lead changes with neither team ahead by more than eight points.

Guard Goran Dragic had 19 points and 11 assists for the Suns and forward Channing Frye added 16, including 12 in the first half of the first quarter.

The Suns rallied from an eight-point deficit in the fourth quarter to tie the score at 93 on a hook shot by center Miles Plumlee with 2:43 left. Forward P.J. Tucker missed two free throws that would have put Phoenix ahead with 2:17 left and Beal nailed a 3-pointer off a Wall feed with 2:03 to go to put the Wizards ahead for good.

The Suns got back to 97-95 on a Plumlee dunk with 41.9 seconds left, but Beal answered with a 15-foot pull-up jumper with 26.9 seconds left and finished the game with a driving dunk with 8.9 seconds left.

After scoring a season-high 124 points in a win over Indiana on Wednesday night, the Suns shot 59 percent from the field in the first half against the Wizards, led by strong first quarters from Dragic and Frye.

Frye had 12 of Phoenix’s first 23 points, making four 3-pointers, and Dragic scored (seven points) or assisted (seven assists) on 24 of 29 Phoenix points — including all four 3s by Frye. But Wall had 11 points and three assists of his own and Ariza added eight points to give Washington a 30-29 lead.

Forward Markieff Morris scored Phoenix’s first seven points of the second quarter and Phoenix build their lead to 46-38 on two free throws by forward Marcus Morris with 5:30 left. But the Wizards immediately responded with a 10-1 run with back-to-back buckets by center Marcin Gortat, giving Washington a 48-47 lead with 3:03 left.

The Suns finished the half with the final six points. Dragic had a steal and layup and also a feed to guard Gerald Green for a reverse dunk in the final 30 seconds. giving the Suns a 57-51 lead at the break.

NOTES: The Suns made 11 of 16 3-pointers in their 124-100 win over the Indiana Pacers on Wednesday night. Their 68.8 shooting percentage behind the arc was the best in a game since Phoenix went 15 of 21 (71.4 percent) in a win over Seattle in 2008. … Wizards C Marcin Gortat averaged 13.3 points, 9.3 rebounds and 1.5 blocks in 189 games during his three seasons with the Suns. His 54.5 shooting percentage from the field was fifth in team history for players who were in at least 150 games. … The Wizards evened the 116-game series at 58-58. … The up-tempo Suns came in averaging 11.5 turnovers in 11 January games, the best in the NBA. They are forcing 16.0 turnovers during that span and averaging 19.3 points off the turnovers. … The Wizards came in 7-2 in their last nine road games. Suns coach Jeff Hornacek on the Wizards: “They’ll go to their fourth or fifth option, which comes late in the shot clock. That when we can’t relax, we have to play all 24 seconds of defense.”

Alan is an expert gambling writer who works as one of the chief editors for Basketball Insiders. He has been covering online gambling and sports betting for over 8 years, having written for the likes of Sportlens,, The Sports Daily, 90min, and His particular specialisms include US online casinos and gambling regulations, and soccer and basketball betting. Based in London, Alan holds an MA in English Literature and is a passionate supporter of Chelsea FC.

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