[As it turns out, Hakim Warrick's monster jam on Yi Jianlian at the end of the first half was a sign for things to come for Washington in the second half.]
There was a battle for momentum toward the end of the second quarter during Sunday night’s Wizards-Suns game. Steve Nash had just penetrated the lane (as he did with ease all night), and dished off to Hakim Warrick (again, as he did all night) for a thunderous slam, and there were just four seconds left on the clock. John Wall then took the ball, ran down the court and launched a shot from just inside the three-point line.
After Wall’s attempt went in off the glass just before the buzzer, Channing Frye looked in disbelief and then ran towards the locker room. Wall briefly looked at the crowd, tapped his chest twice, and then he too ran off the court. His shot had cut the Suns lead to three points, and momentum seemed to be firmly on the Wizards’ side.
In the first 90 seconds or so of the third quarter, it seemed like the Wizards were up to matching the Suns’ intensity. Jason Richardson and Channing Frye both scored off passes from Nash, but the Wizards countered with scores of their own courtesy of two free throws from Wall and a dunk from Alonzo Gee. At that point, the Wizards were still within three points.
But then the Steve Nash show really started to kick into full gear. The Wizards could not keep pace and things began to get out of hand. Nash was either scoring or dishing on every basket, and each of Phoenix’s other four starters (Grant Hill, Channing Frye, Richardson and even Earl-freaking-Barron) scored within the first six minutes.