Steve Nash has a sore hip? Could've fooled us and just about anyone else who watched last night's Phoenix Suns playoff victory against the San Antonio Spurs.
The Suns ended their Spurs game-one curse (until last night, the Suns had lost the last three playoffs game-ones to the hated Men in Black), beating San Antonio 111-102
Nash came away with 33 points and 10 assists in the second-round contest , despite a hip injury that has doctors listing him at about 75 percent.
"He ran it down our throat," Spurs coach Gregg Popovich told reporters after the final buzzer.
"He kind of just picked us apart," added Tim Duncan.
In the first quarter alone, Nash scored 17 points, including weaving his way through the Spurs defenders for five buckets in the first five minutes of the game.
The first half belonged to the Suns, but in the second, the Spurs were well on their way to continuing the curse.
In the third quarter, the Spurs rallied from a 14-point deficit to put the game back in reach with a 12-0 run that seemed to leave the Suns scratching their heads.
The Suns bounced back, though, regaining another 14-point lead in the fourth quarter with about five minutes left.
Again, however, the Spurs seemed hell-bent, fighting their way back to within one with 4:26 left on the clock.
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San Antonio went on a 13-0 run to cut the Suns lead to one late in the game, but the Suns regained some ground with a huge, Jason Richardson three-pointer with about 1:20 remaining in the game, giving the Suns a 103-97 lead.
Grant Hill sank a 13-foot jumper with about 50 seconds left, and the Suns went on to make six of eight free throws to pull out the win.
"You never know what the game is going to present," Nash said later. "You have to be willing and aggressive and do whatever you can. For me, I didn't know how I was going to feel physically, but dragging my leg around in Game 6 in Portland wasn't very fun and it was great to get out there and feel like I could do something."
The Suns square off with the Spurs again tomorrow night in Phoenix in game two of the series. Tip-off time is 6 p.m. TV: TNT. Radio: KTAR 620 AM. For more information, got to www.suns.com.