Regular Season Series (Game 1 of 2)

Series starts 1/9

Game 1: Sunday, January 9th
Game 2: Friday, January 14th

Pacers 89

(16-16, 7-10 away)

Suns 124

(30-4, 15-2 home)

    6:00 PM ET, January 9, 2005

    US Airways Center, Phoenix, AZ

    1 2 3 4 T
    IND 17 25 17 3089
    PHX 35 30 32 27124

    Top Performers

    Ind: J. Tinsley 21 Pts, 2 Reb, 3 Ast, 2 Stl

    PHX: A. Stoudemire 20 Pts, 14 Reb, 4 Ast, 1 Stl, 1 Blk

    Suns coast to sixth straight victory

    PHOENIX (AP) -- The Phoenix Suns were off and running as never before on Sunday night, and the Indiana Pacers hardly knew what hit them.

    Shawn Marion scored 21 points and Amare Stoudemire had 20 points and 14 rebounds to help the Suns rout the Pacers 124-89 on Sunday night for their sixth straight victory and NBA-best 30th of the year, one more than they won all of last season.

    Phoenix's 30-4 start ties the 1959-60 Boston Celtics and 1971-72 Milwaukee Bucks for the best start for a team with four losses in NBA history.

    Joe Johnson added 15, Quentin Richardson 14, and Steve Nash, Steven Hunter and Maceij Lampe each scored 10 in the Suns' highest-scoring game since the 1999-2000 season.

    "It's a blast, man, especially when we come out like we did tonight," Marion said. "The crowd was into it, we were into it, we were all pumped up. We just ran away with it right from the jump, and they didn't show no signs of life out there."

    Next up for Phoenix is a home showdown with Shaquille O'Neal and the Miami Heat on Tuesday night -- a matchup of conference leaders.

    Phoenix never trailed, blowing open a 22-point lead in the first quarter, 25 in the second and 38 in the third and 42 in the fourth.

    "Obviously, we played well," Suns coach Mike D'Antoni said. "Everyone played exactly the way they were supposed to play."

    The Pacers fell to 0-3 on their road trip with a stop left in Memphis. Indiana has lost those three -- against San Antonio, Dallas and Phoenix -- by a combined 68 points.

    Jamaal Tinsley scored 21 and Jermaine O'Neal 16 for the Pacers.

    The Suns, home after a three-game road trip, had the pedal to the floor from the start, opening up a 15-3 lead on Marion's 3-pointer, then 22-5 on Stoudemire's fastbreak stuff with 5:44 left in the quarter.

    "I wouldn't say shellshocked, but they were stunned a little bit," Marion said. "We just hit them by surprise. That's our first meeting with them this year. It was probably going through their mind like 'Man' and they were tired, too."

    Both teams had played Saturday night.

    "They jumped on us early. It was tough," Tinsley said. "They're hard to guard."

    Phoenix led by 22 twice in the first quarter, the last time at 31-9 on Richardson's turnaround 10-footer from the baseline with 1:56 left.

    The Suns got the lead to 25 late in the second quarter, the last time at 65-40 after Nash's 19-footer with 22 seconds to play. Tinsley's layup made it 65-42 at the break.

    Phoenix started the second half with a 10-2 run to go up 75-44 on Marion's 13-foot turnaround jumper with 8:43 left in the third quarter.

    Moments later, Marion blocked Reggie Miller's shot, then floated in for an acrobatic layup to make it 77-47. Hunter's rebound dunk put the Suns up 97-59 after three quarters.

    "Hey, there's a reason they're 30-4," Indiana coach Rick Carlisle said. "They're really good."

    Game notes

    The teams play again at Indiana on Friday. ... Phoenix had win streaks of nine, 11 and five games after its first three losses. ... The Pacers are 1-7 against Western Conference teams on the road. ... The Suns' previous highest-scoring game this season was 122 (twice) and biggest victory margin was 32.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 89 124
    FGM-FGA 33-83 (.398) 50-92 (.543)
    3PM-3PA 5-15 (.333) 9-23 (.391)
    FTM-FTA 18-25 (.720) 15-22 (.682)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 8-31 15-55
    Assists 18 29
    Turnovers 10 10
    Steals 7 7
    Blocks 4 7
    Fast Break Points 14 20
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 17 (1/0) 19 (0/0)
    Largest Lead 0 42

    Top Performers

    Jamaal Tinsley Tinsley
    Points: 21
    Reb: 2
    Ast: 3
    Stl: 2
    Blk: 0
    Amar'e Stoudemire Stoudemire
    Points: 20
    Reb: 14
    Ast: 4
    Stl: 1
    Blk: 1