Mar. 2, 2012; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Los Angeles Clippers forward (32) Blake Griffin takes a shot under pressure from Phoenix Suns center (8) Channing Frye in the first quarter at the US Airways Center. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE

Suns Beat Kings 96-88

Win over Sacramento is the Suns third straight.

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Suns Overcome Lowest-Scoring Half Of Season For Win

The Phoenix Suns and Channing Frye had a most forgettable first half Friday night against the Los Angeles Clippers, the top team in the Pacific Division. But they managed to overcome CP3, Blake Griffin and the rest of that ultra-chic Lob City thing for an uplifting 81-78 win at the US Airways Center.

A loose-ball foul on Griffin with 38.4 seconds left to play -- just before a certain shot-clock violation -- helped save the Suns as Steve Nash calmly sank both free throws to give the Suns the points needed to secure the victory. The call was reviewed and went the Suns' way.

Marcin Gortat swatted away a follow by the Clips' Caron Butler after the free throws, and Frye, who was 0-for-10 in the first half, hit a free throw he earned with good defense at the other end on Griffin prior to the block.

Chris Paul (CP3) hit a 3-pointer with 26.5 seconds left to cut the Suns' lead to 77-75, but after a wild sequence in which the Clippers miraculously managed not to foul Nash -- though he was clearly hacked -- Jared Dudley made two free throws with 13.3 seconds. Grant Hill blocked a three from Paul and took off down the court for the clinching dunk.

The Suns (16-20) trailed 35-32 at halftime, their lowest point total of any half this season, and made only 13 of 45 shot attempts. They turned things around in the third quarter and had to hold on at the end.

A 31-point third quarter gave the Suns a 63-52 lead going into the fourth. But the Clippers rallied to tie the score at 70 with 3:59 to play on Mo Williams' three.

The Suns were the better defensive team down the stretch, forcing the Clips into some difficult shots. Dudley finished with 22 points and seven rebounds, Gortat 18 and 14 boards and Frye only six points but 14 rebounds.

Griffin and Paul were a combined 12-for-34 from the field on the second of back-to-back games for L.A.

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Phoenix Suns Vs. Los Angeles Clippers: TV Schedule, Lineups And Lob City Invasion

The Phoenix Suns kicked off the second half of their season with a nice little win over the Timberwolves. The schedule favored the home team with the Suns resting and practicing for two days while the Wolves had two straight games before traveling to Phoenix for the their third in three nights.

Now things get more serious with the Los Angeles Clippers coming in on Friday night for a national TV tilt. Both the Suns and Clippers are playing with no rest and while the Clips did have to travel from Sacramento (they beat the Kings), they are the far younger team.

This game should be yet another test for the Suns. If they have any hopes of turning around their season and making the playoffs, this is the kind of game, at home, that they will need to win. Based on their performance so far this season, it's hard to be too optimistic about that result. But if nothing else, this game should be fun with Lob City in town.

Projected Lineups:

TV broadcast info:

The Suns game tips off at 7:00 p.m. Arizona time on Fox Sports Arizona and ESPN. Arizona Sports 620 radio. Bright Side of the Sun will have the live game thread.

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