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Phoenix Suns leading New York Knicks 64-56 at halftime

Nov 26, 2023; New York, New York, USA; Phoenix Suns forward Keita Bates-Diop (21) dunks in the first quarter against the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

A strong early performance from some often-forgotten names has the Suns leading the Knicks inside Madison Square Garden at halftime.

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Hindered by the absence of Kevin Durant and Bradley Beal due to injuries, Phoenix had to lean on the depth that has been under scrutiny throughout the season.

To add further reliance on Phoenix’s depth, Devin Booker ended the first half shooting 2-8 with just eight points.

Meanwhile, Eric Gordan took over from beyond the arc, sinking six three-pointers for 17 first-half points, marking a season high.

Notably, Gordon stands as the sole Suns player with double-digit points in the initial two quarters.

Instead of the high-scoring affair to which fans have become accustomed this year, the Suns showed off their defense and rebounding skills.

With 31 rebounds to the Knicks’ 17, Phoenix dominated the boards, led by Jusuf Nurkic with an impressive eight rebounds.

In the scoring department, the first half saw Jalen Brunson as the standout for the Knicks, contributing 20 points. However, beyond Brunson, who accounted for over a third of the Knicks’ points, New York struggled to find consistency, shooting at a 40% clip.

As the Knicks have yet to hold a lead in this game, the Suns’ depth, defensive showcase, and rebounding superiority have been pivotal in securing their halftime advantage at Madison Square Garden.

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