After Marcin Gortat lost major minutes to Jermaine O'Neal Sunday evening, Seth Pollack speculated on Bright Side of the Sun why one of the Suns' best players was left on the bench for the fourth quarter against the 76ers.
As Pollack points out, Gortat started slow once again in the first half, going 2-for-5 from the field for only five points. But once the team left the locker room, the Polish Hammer exploded for 13 points on 5-of-6 shooting in the third quarter before riding the pine for the final fifteen minutes.
With head coach Alvin Gentry being normally cryptic self, Pollack was left to guess that Gortat's benching was a message to the entire team about their slow starts. O'Neal basically confirmed that theory after the game by claiming that even though the 76ers went into overtime the previous night, they still "had a lot more energy than we had."
O'Neal did play well in his 22 minutes off the bench as his compiled 11 points and two blocks while Gortat from the sideline. Gortat's rebound prowess was missed though as O'Neal only wrangled in three boards in his time on the court.
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