Lake PTC-CBS Sports: NBA 1980- WC Semifinals Game 1- Phoenix Suns @ Los Angeles Lakers: First Quarter
The Lakers and Suns had a very good rivalry in the late 1970s and 1980s. Playing each other in several very good playoff series over about a ten-year period. With the Lakers winning all of those series. The problem with the Suns is that even when they’ve been considered NBA Finals contenders, that has always been soft. Because they’ve always been a very finesse uptempo team that doesn’t play much defense and is soft in the middle. Charles Barkley is really the Suns only great big man that they’ve ever had. Unless you want to count Amare Stoudemire who was there a few seasons and Sir Charles was a 6’4-6’5 man playing power forward at the end of his dominance. The Suns have never had a dominant center and shot blocker and great rebounder inside.
The Suns have had good playmakers and slashers and shooters. But they’ve always been somewhat one-dimensional offensively replying on someone to drive and kick to the open shooter or slasher. And getting points off the fast break. They’ve been for the most part a great rebounding or even a very good defensive team. They sort of remind me of the Miami Dolphins and San Diego Chargers of the 1980s. Who relied so much on Dan Marino and Dan Fouts (respectfully) and their passing games to win, because neither the Dolphins and Chargers for the most part didn’t have good running game and defense they could rely on when their passing game struggled. And finesse teams in the 1980s didn’t beat the Lakers for the most part. You had to deal with Kareem in the post and keep him busy when he was on defense and try to contain Magic. And even if you were successful there you had their great supporting cast to deal with as well.