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NBA Roundup: Raising Arizona

Notes from Sunday's games in the National Baskteball Association ...

When The Sun Hits Your Eye Like A Big Pizza Pie That's Amare. Exactly how good are the Phoenix Suns? There's no real consensus in Arizona, where fans can't even agree on Steve Nash's hairstyle. But the Eastern Conference thinks they're pretty damned good. The Suns have won 20 of 21 games against Eastern Conference foes, including Sunday's 115-100 victory over Cleveland, prompting LeBron to say "The way they're playing right now, they're unbeatable." Nash scored 23 points and had 15 assists, and Amare Stoudamire had 22 points as Phoenix won its 17th straight, the NBA's longest win streak in seven seasons (and tied for fifth-longest ever). The Lakers own the record with 33 straight in 1971-72. The Suns are 34-4 since opening the season 1-5.


It Came From Beneath The Starting Lineup. Michael Finley, well down there on the Spurs' bench, was somehow in the game at the end and took the shot that counted; a 3-pointer with 1.3 seconds remaining that gave the Spurs a 96-94 win over the Lakers. Finley was averaging 7.7 points, but scored 17 on Sunday, including five 3-pointers. Kobe Bryant had 31 points. San Antonio was 22-of-24 from the free throw line line, while Los Angeles was 18-of-31.

Doctor Detroit. Wouldn't it be swell if Chris Webber finally led a team to a championship, and that team was his hometown Pistons? (Perhaps "swell" isn't the word.) Webber and Rasheed Wallace combined for 37 points, 20 rebounds and eight blocks to lead Detroit to a 95-87 win over the Pacers. The win was coach Flip Saunders' 500th, and we're sure that Wallace baked him a cake, or at least sent a singing telegram.

What Made Milwaukee Famous, Has Made A Loser Out Of Me. Mo Williams' 20-foot jumper with three seconds remaining gave the Bucks a 107-105 win over the NBA's most valuable franchise, the Knicks.

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