In preparation of Game 4 Suns head coach Monty Williams didn’t show the film from their Game 3 loss.
Instead, he boiled it down to four key bullet points.
Most of which rounded back to the Suns playing the way they played all year.
They rewarded their head coach with a crucial 100-92 Game 4 win at Staples Center on Sunday afternoon.
In effect taking back homecourt advantage in a series now tied 2-2 with two possible home games at the “Valley of the Sun.”
It was amusing how it worked out that way given what Williams decided on his own merit.
Monty, was determined, borderline strong-willed in sticking with his guys even though many outsiders called for some overreacting and possible lineup changes.
It was rumored that he considered sitting superstar point “GAWD” Chris Paul, before letting him play following 48 straight hours of treatment to his injured shoulder.
Jae Crowder couldn’t make a shot (2-20 from three point range) the first three games as the Lakers continually doubled off of him to help on Devin Booker or DeAndre Ayton.
To the dismay of many, Williams stuck with both players who are the true heart and soul of the team and provide the toughness and grit and basketball IQ that has helped Phoenix excel.
Paul and Crowder have the most playoff experience on the roster and they both rewarded their coach with quality performances that now give the Suns a real shot at winning this series.
There’s no price that can be put on the leadership that Paul brings and the toughness displayed by Crowder in his battle with LeBron James.
Both were down on themselves after losing Games 2 and 3 and came out doing all they could to help the Suns tie the series and make it the best-of-three.
Couple that with the rim protection and rebounding by DeAndre Ayton who’s played with a “relentless attitude” we didn’t always see from the former No.1 overall pick during the season.
Cameron Payne, the backup to CP3 has been downright outstanding attacking the paint and hitting open shots, showing us Ja Morant ain’t the only quality point guard from Murray State.
On the Lakers side, the angst of losing Anthony Davis to a groin injury in the first half and the absconds of Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, led to a struggle to get contributions from others outside of Marc Gasol.
It’s funny hearing Laker fans complain and make excuses about the Game 4 loss with AD hurt, but hasn’t Chris Paul been compromised the entirety of the series for the Suns?
With AD being listed as day-to-day, the pressure now shifts to James as he’ll have to carry the bulk of the scoring load, because even if Davis plays, he won’t be 100%.
This is a series I said the Suns could win prior to Paul being injured, now with AD hurt that seems like a real possibility. We shall see how it goes in Phoenix, AZ on Tuesday night.