PHOENIX, AZ - MARCH 27: Josh Childress #1 of the Phoenix Suns reaches for a loose ball under pressure from Peja Stojakovic #16 of the Dallas Mavericks during the NBA game at US Airways Center on March 27, 2011 in Phoenix, Arizona. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Suns Can't Find The Broad Side Of The Net, Mavs Win 91-83

The Suns were a horrible 1-16 from three-point range and 14-23 from the free throw line. On a night when the defense was good and the Mavericks cold for most of the game, the Suns self-destructed.

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Phoenix Suns Resigned To End Of Playoff Hopes, Lose To Mavericks 91-83

You can stick a fork in this season, it's over. The players aren't going to pretend that any playoff hope still live as the team lost its third game in four tries. The Suns vow to keep fighting and to be professional but there's no denying reality and this team is a lot of things, but delusional isn't one of them.

"It feels like it's over, just because we haven't played as well or won games so it's disappointing, but it's been disappointing all season," Steve Nash said after the game.

Nash, who is worn down and banged up at this point in the season -- as he's been at this point in the last three or four seasons -- couldn't find his shot tonight. He went 3-11 and had just six points but still managed to record 10 assists on a night when his team only shot 42.5 percent.

As a team, the Suns had a horrible shooting night from the field. They went just 1-16 from the three-point line. The one three point shot, credited to Vince Carter, is the fewest the team has made all season. Three times they had just three, threes in a game.

Add to that just 14-23 (.609) from the free throw line and the Suns gave themselves little chance even though the Mavericks, who played last night in Utah, were also cold. Dallas shot just 38.1 percent and thanks to solid defense from Grant Hill, Dirk Nowitzki went 6-19 on the night. 

While coach Alvin Gentry was proud of his team's effort and will stick with his new starting lineup, there's no getting over the fact that this season is going to end in disappointment. 

For Nash, the blame falls on the lack of continuity on the roster. Asked about his feelings on the new lineup that has Jared Dudley and Marcin Gortat starting, Nash answered with a comment about theme of the season.

"Well, you're damned if you do, damned if you don't. We start this lineup and we have a good first quarter but then we don't have Marcin coming off the bench or Jared (Dudley) coming off the bench.

"We're a team that's had so much change this year that I don't think we know where we are yet. We're still trying to learn who we are with all the new pieces. We have five guys left from last year. It's been hard to really get on a roll or momentum without commonality."

The Mavericks were led by three players with 16 points each: Jason Terry off the bench, along with Jason Kidd and Tyson Chandler.

The Suns fall to 36-36 on the season with just 10 games remaining for this lottery-bound team. 


Vince Carter And Robin Lopez Benched, Marcin Gortat And Jared Dudley Now Starting

Alvin Gentry didn't beat around the bush today when asked about the changes to his starting lineup that were hinted at yesterday.

"I'm going to start Marcin and I'm going to start JD (Jared Dudley). How about that for a direct answer," Gentry said.

Here's everything Gentry had to say about the moves, including Vince Carter's reaction:

"JD's played well over a stretch of games. We'll stick him out there as starter and see if that gets us off to a better start, see if we can finish quarters."

"Obviously, Marcin has been playing starters' minutes anyway. This way he can probably get more rest in between long stretches then playing him off the bench. When we play him off the bench he's basically playing the last 17 or 18 minutes of the first and second quarters. This way, I think we can break it up a little bit more and give him an opportunity (to rest), and even in the third and fourth quarters he can find a way to get a little rest where he's not playing 16, 17 consecutive minutes."

"I don't think it's a reflection on (how Vince and Robin have played). As a team, we've been inconsistent. It hasn't been one guy, it hasn't been two guys. Marcin, I put in the lineup because he can give us some additional scoring early in the game and see what happens and JD's played well and pretty consistent."

"I'm sure that (Carter) is disappointed. I'm glad that he's disappointed. I would be disappointed if he weren't disappointed but it's just something that we want to take a look at. He's understanding of it, I don't think he's real happy about it."

Gentry said that Carter will come off the bench and play. Carter has started 907 of 915 games in his NBA career.

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