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Phoenix Suns

Suns Fall Short Without Big Three In Preseason Home Opener

The Phoenix Suns hosted the Denver Nuggets in their home preseason opener. Suns’ head coach Frank Vogel made the decision to sit Bradley Beal, Kevin Durant, and Devin Booker.

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The starting lineup for Phoenix was Saban Lee, Grayson Allen, Josh Okogie, Chimezie Mutu, and Jusuf Nurkic.

The Nuggets played most of their starters, Jamal Murray, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Aaron Gordon, and Nikola Jokic started along side Justin Holiday.

The first quarter went back and forth as both teams had sloppy moments. The Suns had seven turnovers and the Nuggets turned the ball over five times in the quarter.

Okogie and Caldwell-Pope led all scorers with six points. Denver was up 25-23 after the first quarter.

The Nuggets started to separate themselves from the Suns to start the second quarter. They outscored Phoenix 11-6 in the first four minutes of the quarter.

The Suns were able to keep the game close behind the play of Eric Gordon and Grayson Allen. Allen went on a 7-0 run midway through the second quarter.

The Nuggets ended the quarter on a 9-4 run. Denver led Phoenix 55-48 at halftime.

Jamal Murray and Caldwell-Pope led the Nuggets in scoring with 12 points each. Jusuf Nurkic led the Suns with 10 points. Eric Gordon had nine points in the half.

The Second Half

The Nuggets kept hold of their lead in the third quarter even with their stars sitting. Julian Strawther really showed up in a big way for Denver with his smooth jump shot.

Strawther was the main reason the Nuggets extended their lead to 10 points. Denver led 87-77 at the end of the third quarter.

Phoenix started the fourth quarter on a 8-3 run behind the play of Bol Bol and Nassir Little.

That run would be nullified by the Nuggets as they were able to pull away. Zeke Nnaji, Peyton Watson and others stepped up in the fourth to build the lead back up for Denver.

The Nuggets defeated the Suns, 115-107.

Players of the Game

Julian Strawther had 20 points on 8/12 shooting from the floor, and 4/7 from behind the three point line. Josh Okogie stood out for Phoenix in the loss as he had 17 points, six rebounds and two steals. Okogie had a very efficient night shooting 7/13 from the floor and 3/6 from three point range.

Up Next

The Phoenix Suns travel to Portland to take on the Trailblazers on October 12th. The Denver Nuggets are also on the road as they take on the Chicago Bulls on October 12th as well.

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