Friday , Mar , 03 , 2006 C.Y. Ellis

Suns still rising, host reeling Magic

(Sports Network) – The streaking Phoenix Suns go for their ninth straight win
tonight, as they welcome the Orlando Magic to US Airways Center.

The Suns, who won nine in a row earlier this season from November 22 to
December 9, play the second of a brief two-game homestand. Shawn Marion posted
29 points and pulled sown 18 rebounds as Phoenix downed the Milwaukee Bucks,
123-110 at US Airways Center.

Reigning MVP Steve Nash scored 23 points and dished 13 assists for Phoenix,
which won its eighth straight. Boris Diaw added 16 points, and Raja Bell had
14 points. Leandro Barbosa and Pat Burke, who notched a season high, both
scored 12 points, while James Jones added 10 points in the win.

Marion has collected a double-double in six straight games, and leads the
league with 44 this season.

Phoenix is 23-8 at home this season. The Suns have won six in a row as the
host.

Orlando will try and put the brakes on a three-game losing streak, as it plays
the third of a five-game road trip. On Wednesday, Jason Richardson poured in
25 points, pulled down nine rebounds and dished out six assists to lead the
Golden State Warriors to a 98-94 win over the Magic at The Arena in Oakland.

DeShawn Stevenson recorded 18 points in the loss to the Warriors for Orlando,
which dropped 10 in a row on the road. Dwight Howard contributed a double-
double with 17 points and 12 boards, while Keyon Dooling netted 13 and Darko
Milicic finished with 12 points and nine boards in the loss.

The Magic, who lost to the Lakers 102-87 in the opener of the swing, are a
brutal 6-23 on the road this season. They are scheduled to visit the Denver
Nuggets on Saturday at the Pepsi Center and the Utah Jazz on Monday at the
Delta Center in the finale of the trip.

This is the second and final meeting of the season between the clubs. On
January 24th, Howard recorded 22 points and 12 rebounds, as the Magic defeated
the Suns, 111-102, at TD Waterhouse Centre.

The Suns have won three straight and six of the last seven meetings in this
series. Orlando has lost three straight after winning its last two at Phoenix.

PHO ORL