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When the Phoenix Suns hosted the Los Angeles Lakers last February, the Suns had nothing to play for but pride. The Suns weren’t scoring quite as well as they used to and, consequently, they weren’t winning nearly as often as they used to. The Suns managed to beat the Lakers that night, but only the most hopeless optimists viewed that win as anything more than a moral victory.

It will be a different scene when the Lakers return to U.S. Airways Center. In the last eight weeks, the Suns have proved the hopeless optimists in the Valley right by posting one of the league’s best records. In the process, the Suns have charged up the standings and are now a serious threat to make the playoffs. Another win over the Lakers could only help their cause.

Sat., April 7, 7 p.m., 2012


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