NBA Playoff Picture: Suns Will Need To Perform Well Over Last 7 Games

Apr 13, 2012; Houston, TX, USA; Phoenix Suns guard Steve Nash (13) drives to the basket against the Houston Rockets in the first quarter at the Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-US PRESSWIRE

The Phoenix Suns are heading into the home stretch of the 2011-12 NBA season. They have seven games remaining and need to keep winning.

It's all coming down to the wire for the Phoenix Suns. With just seven games remaining in the regular season, the Suns will need to keep their heads above water in order to keep their playoff hopes alive. It might be closer than they -- or the fans -- would like it to be, but it is miles better than to be out of the race altogether at this point.

Five of the eight playoff spots in the Western Conference have not yet been clinched. The Suns are five games behind the Los Angeles Clippers, so if they make it above the cutoff line, they won't be grabbing the No. 4 seed. Phoenix is currently just one game behind both the Houston Rockets and Denver Nuggets, so those are the teams Suns fans need to be desperately rooting against. The Suns are also 2.5 games behind the Dallas Mavericks, but the Mavs have started streaking again and threaten to pull away. The closest competition for the Suns is the Utah Jazz, who are a half-game behind Phoenix and are 4-6 over their last 10 games.

The Suns can do a bit of helping their own case, as two of their last three regular-season games are against the Nuggets and the Jazz. The only legitimately easy game remaining on the schedule is Monday's game against the Portland Trail Blazers. Other than that, the Suns face some pretty tough competition. So it will come down to whether the Suns can win enough games over the rest of the season while their opponents (namely, the Jazz, Nuggets and Rockets) continue to lose.

For all news and information regarding the Phoenix Suns, please visit Bright Side of the Sun.

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