2012 NBA power rankings: Phoenix Suns are fading into irrelevancy out West

Howard Smith-US PRESSWIRE

After going an uninspired 1-3 over the last seven days, the Phoenix suns are trending in the same direction as their recent play.

The Phoenix Suns emerged from SB Nation's Week 6 power rankings at No. 24 -- one spot behind where they were one week ago.

The Suns are 7-11 in the young season, and they've had a difficult time in the last few weeks. Because of their recent struggles, they've fallen and will continue to do so until they can find some consistency. Among the many factors contributing to the low ranking is the how Phoenix struggles to get and maintain leads. Finding themselves playing from behind often causes them to press and make bad decisions that end up costing them games.

Marcin Gortat's defense has been on the decline. As he struggles to affect shots and be the force that he was just a year ago, the Suns will have a much more difficult time staying competitive in a difficult Western Conference. Their only win last week came against the Cleveland Cavaliers, another team that has had difficulty finding its way.

At 1-3 over the last seven days, the Suns have nowhere to go but up.

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