Phoenix Suns Get Season's Best Win, Top Champion Dallas Mavs In Thriller

When Grant Hill stepped to the foul line with seconds left in the game and the Phoenix Suns up by two points, we thought he'd be money. Hill shoots about 80 percent from the stripe, and the game on the line, Clunk and clunk.

The usually reliable Duke grad probably hasn't missed two in a row like that since before he heard of the town called Durham, North Carolina.

Defending world champion Dallas had two chances to tie the game in the last ten seconds, but Mavs guard Rodrigue Beaubois missed both shots, the final one an open, buzzer-beating jumper from about 16 feet.

Final score: Phoenix 96, Dallas 94, in what has to be the Suns' best win of this not-so-hot season.

We're done dissing Mr. Hill in this blog post, by the way.

The staunch way he played defense on the usually unstoppable Dirk Nowitzski, holding him to 18 hard-fought points, was one of the keys to the win.

He and Steve Nash, both in their late 30s, are a testament to what hard work can mean to a professional athlete. They are not what they used to be, but they still on an extremely high level, and are class acts off the floor.

Dallas this season isn't the Dallas of last season (at least the end of the season), when the Mavs swept through the playoffs en route to their first NBA championship. Several new players trying to fit in, and injuries and fitness questions about Nowitzki have hampered the team, which currently is in 6th place in the playoff standings.

It was the Suns' fourth win in a row at the US Airways Center after a brutal start to the season on the home court. What was especially sweet for Phoenix was that the win came just one night after a tough road loss to formidable Oklahoma City (a title contender this year).

Look, the Suns are a long shot of even making the playoffs this year.

So let's enjoy last night's win for a sec, because it was a good one.

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Paul Rubin
Contact: Paul Rubin