Suns defense sinking to bottom of NBA

Paul Coro of the Arizona Republic reports:

Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade (2nd-R) drives to the basket as Phoenix Suns' Hedo Turkoglu (2nd-L) defends, during their NBA basketball game in Miami, Florida November 17, 2010. REUTERS/Joe Skipper (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASKETBALL)

The addition of forward Hedo Turkoglu and other individuals’ drop-offs have turned the Suns into arguably the NBA’s worst defense. They entered Sunday as the second-worst scoring defense (109.0) to Minnesota and were tied with Sacramento for the worst defensive field-goal percentage (48.9).

The Suns are 9-19 when guard Steve Nash does not play, and he is expected to miss a third consecutive game Monday at Houston because of a groin strain. Nash is no defensive savior, but he could at least lead by example with effort.

Gentry told the team that Grant Hill gave the necessary effort Saturday but had few followers. Charlotte scored 30 more points than its season average after it had played Friday at Miami.

“We better rethink who we are, and we better start playing hard, and we better start competing,” Gentry said.

The Suns have faced 10 playoff teams in 13 games and are playing their seventh game in the past 11 days Monday.

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