Lakers ready to face the Phoenix Suns
The Phoenix Suns still have Steve Nash running the point, Grant Hill and Jason Richardson on the wings and young center Robin Lopez.
But the Suns are missing Amare Stoudemire, and that is a big piece of their offense that signed with the New York Knicks.
Now the Suns start Hedo Turkoglu, who was acquired from the Toronto Raptors in the Leandro Barbosa trade, at power forward. Hakim Warrick, who the Suns signed as a free agent, is the backup.
The Suns also signed Josh Childress, who spent the last two years playing in Greece.
So are the Suns that much different than what the Lakers faced last season in the Western Conference finals?
"You know, they really aren't [that different]," Lakers Coach Phil Jackson said after his team's shootaround Friday at US Airways Center. "But they miss Stoudemire's presence, that big body going down the lane dunking the ball."
Jackson said his Lakers will see a Phoenix team Friday night that still runs high pick-and-rolls and still lets Nash run the offense.
The Suns defeated the Jazz in Utah on Thursday night, and Warrick played a big role by scoring 18 points and grabbing 11 rebounds.
Jackson said the Suns have a really good second unit that hustles and works hard.
-- Broderick Turner in Phoenix