Pacific Notes: Suns, Kings, Holmes, Drummond, Lakers

Suns shooting guard Devin Booker drives to the basket vs. the Hornets. - USA Today

The Phoenix Suns have taken part in their share of nail-biters lately, but they still emerged with three wins in their latest four-game trip and they still sit in second place in the Western Conference.

“If we want to go where we want to go, we are going to have to clean up some late-game situations,” star guard Devin Booker said, via Duane Rankin of the Arizona Republic. “I think the best way to learn is just experiencing it, being in the fire.”

Starting with Wednesday’s game against the Atlanta Hawks, the Suns are set to begin a three-game homestand. The goal? Continue to try to make up ground on the Utah Jazz (the Suns are 3.5 games back) and keep the Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers at bay.

Along with Booker, the coaching of Monty Williams and point guard play of Chris Paul are reasons for the surge — which actually started at the end of last season in the Disney bubble.

“Emotionally, you’ve just have to hang in there even though you are kind of up and down,” Williams said. “I have to be as steady as I can so I can give some direction.”

More from the Pacific

  • Don’t look now, but the Sacramento Kings are making a playoff push after winning five straight. The latest came courtesy of Monday’s victory over the San Antonio Spurs. It’s the Kings’ longest winning streak in five years. They enter Tuesday just 2.5 games back of the Spurs for the final playoff spot.

  • Kings forward/center Richaun Holmes was the topic of trade rumors entering last week’s deadline. But now that things have settled, the focus is indeed on making the playoffs. “Right now, just focused on getting better every day, taking one game at a time and just worrying about how we can continue to make ourselves better on both sides of the floor and let the rest take care of itself,” Holmes told reporters.

  • We touched on the Kings general manager Monte McNair’s thinking at the trade deadline, and moving forward, in earlier post. You can read that right here.

  • Newcomer Andre Drummond is expected to make his Lakers debut sometime this week, and told reporters he intends to help in any way necessary. “I think our defense is going to be really crazy when (LeBron James and Anthony Davis) come back,” Drummond said. “And I’m looking forward to it.”

  • Drummond arrived after a contract buyout with the Cleveland Cavaliers. He hasn’t played in a game since Feb. 19. “You can imagine the hunger and excitement I have to play and step on the court,” he said. “I had an incredible month of work where I’m ready to play today.”

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About the Author

Sam Amico
Sam Amico has covered the NBA on a full-time basis for OutKick, Sports Illustrated and FOX Sports, and has been a regular contributor to CBS Sports, the Boston Herald and NBA.com.

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