Phoenix Suns coach Jeff Hornacek on the team’s recent struggles: “You can’t have your finger on the pulse of the game and say it’s OK to go in and take a timeout.
We’re not going to do that.
We have to take that away.”
(AP) Phoenix Suns point guard Eric Bledsoe (12) defends while defending the ball against Charlotte Bobcats forward Josh McRoberts (10) during the second half of an NBA basketball game on Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021, in Phoenix.
Phoenix Suns forward Eric Blessoe is held by Charlotte Bobcat guard Josh McCorinny during the first half of the NBA basketball league game on Monday, Jan, 21, 2021.
(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin) Phoenix (2-0) has lost nine straight games and seven of its last eight.
It is the Suns’ first six-game skid since a nine-game slide in March of 2015-16.
Phoenix shot 48.7 percent and made 8 of 22 free throws in a 106-91 loss at Sacramento on Saturday.
“I’m a competitor.
You get a taste of that every night,” Bledby said.
“We just have to stay focused and continue to do our job and not get carried away.”
The Suns are averaging 91.8 points and 10.4 assists while allowing 101.6 points per game.
The Bobcats (1-4) are coming off a 109-96 home loss to the Detroit Pistons on Saturday that dropped them to 1-5.
Coach Mike Dunlap said the Bobcats have improved since the end of their losing streak.
“They’re better than they were at the start of the year,” Dunlap told the team radio broadcast.
“But I think you can’t put a price tag on it.
I know it’s tough for our guys to go through that, but we’re going to find a way to get it done.
We know how much we can improve, but I think we’re at the point where we can get it going again.”
The Bobcat starters scored the game’s first 14 points.
“Just the fact that they can go on a roll and put us on our heels is the difference,” Dunlam said.
“(The Bobcats) came in here and wanted to win a game.
We wanted to play well, and we didn’t.”
The Hornets’ last victory came Nov. 10, 2009, in Memphis.
Charlotte has lost two of three against Phoenix.
Hornaceks has led the Bobcat to two victories in Phoenix and three in Memphis, including a 97-85 victory in December 2015.
“The players know it, and the coaches know it.
You know the chemistry and the chemistry of this team,” Hornaceys said.
The Suns have won seven of their last eight meetings with the Bobco, but have not won consecutive home games since Feb. 26, 2017, against the Memphis Grizzlies.
The two teams are 2-5 in their last 10 matchups at The Palace.
Phoenix won 106-83 in Phoenix on Dec. 27, 2016, and 109-84 in Memphis on Dec., 31, 2016.
The teams split the series in the first meeting of the season on Jan. 2, 2018.
The Hornets have won five of their past six meetings with Phoenix, including two in the last four years.
They shot 48 percent in a 97–78 win on March 10, 2017.
Phoenix was without center Chandler Parsons, who missed the last two games because of a left knee sprain.
The team was without guards Devin Booker and Rodney Hood and forward Eric Gordon, who was suspended for the first four games of this season.
The Pelicans (0-2) have lost nine of their previous 10.
“That’s the reality of the situation we’re in,” said Pelicans coach Monty Williams.
“When you have guys that are on suspension for four games or more, you’re dealing with that.
It’s a challenge for our team.
But it’s our job to be the team we can be and not to let that go to our head.”