In a clash that reflected the stark contrast in fortunes between the Phoenix Suns and the struggling Miami Heat, the Suns emerged victorious with a convincing 118-105 win on Monday night (Tuesday, January 30, in the Philippines).
Eric Gordon led the way with 23 points off the bench, while Devin Booker added 22, further compounding the Heat’s woes with their seventh consecutive loss.
The Suns, currently riding an impressive 8-2 record in their last 10 games, demonstrated their resilience and cohesion. Sweeping the Heat for only the second time in the last 17 seasons, the Suns showcased their prowess and determination, reminiscent of their journey to the NBA Finals in the 2020-21 season.
“Trying to get wins, that’s the name of the game,” commented Devin Booker, highlighting the Suns’ focus on achieving success. Despite facing defensive challenges, Booker acknowledged the importance of the victory, especially on a back-to-back against a formidable opponent like the Miami Heat.
In addition to Gordon and Booker’s contributions, Kevin Durant scored 20 points, and Bradley Beal added 19, underlining the Suns’ balanced offensive attack. All three players also showcased their playmaking skills, each recording seven assists. The Suns led by as many as 28 points and maintained control throughout, holding a commanding 100-74 lead heading into the final quarter.
While the Suns have struggled in fourth-quarter differentials this season, they managed to weather a late surge from the Heat, securing the win despite the lead getting trimmed to 115-105 with 1:33 left. The Heat, now 24-23, find themselves in the midst of a seven-game losing streak, a stark contrast to their 24-16 record just two weeks ago.
Jimmy Butler led the Heat with a game-high 26 points, but the team failed to find a rhythm and regain their earlier form. Heat coach Erik Spoelstra emphasized the need for effort, toughness, and unity during challenging times, recognizing the potential for greatness on the other side of adversity.
Despite playing with a mask to protect his broken nose, Bradley Beal showcased his resilience on the court. The Suns faced a setback with the loss of starter Grayson Allen to a sprained right ankle in the first half, but the bench stepped up, contributing 48 points to the team’s overall performance.
Reflecting on the victory, Suns coach Frank Vogel expressed pride in his team’s performance, especially on the second night of a back-to-back. Meanwhile, the Heat find themselves in unfamiliar territory, dealing with their first seven-game losing streak since the 2007-08 season. Spoelstra emphasized the need to overcome this challenging phase, echoing the sentiment that the team must endure difficulties together to discover the potential for greatness on the other side.