Suns 123, Raptors 105

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TORONTO (AP)—Amare Stoudemire and the Phoenix Suns used a record-setting point total in the third quarter to beat the Toronto Raptors.

Stoudemire scored 19 of his 27 points in the third quarter and the Suns won their fifth straight with a 123-105 victory over Toronto on Sunday.

Phoenix outscored Toronto 46-26 in the third quarter, the most points scored against the Raptors in any quarter in their 10-year history.

“We are a high-powered offense. We tend to set records like that,” Stoudemire said with a laugh.

The Suns, who tied San Antonio for the best record in the league at 36-10, have scored at least 121 points in four straight games.

Steve Nash had 19 points and 12 assists and all five starters scored at least 17 points. The Canadian didn’t play in the fourth.

“I feel great. I only had a half day at work today,” said Nash, who helped the Suns to a 104-72 lead after three quarters. “When we get into the open court it’s very difficult to contain us, so we have breakout quarters like that. It was certainly one to remember, maybe one of my best.”

Shawn Marion added 21 points and 17 rebounds for the Suns, who went 4-0 on their road trip.

Chris Bosh tied a career high with 27 points for the Raptors, who have lost three straight. Jalen Rose added 21 points.

Toronto suspended point guard Rafer Alston for two games earlier Sunday for his conduct the previous day at practice.

“It was embarrassing,” Rose said. “Amare Stoudemire was in first-half foul trouble and he came back in the third and really asserted himself, dominated.”

Phoenix has averaged 123 points in six games since Nash returned from a thigh injury. Stoudemire has shot 69 percent from the field (69-for-100) since Nash returned. He shot 34 percent in the previous three games, when the NBA’s assists leader was sidelined.

“Amare gets 27 points in 21 minutes, he does a lot of good things and Steve makes it all go,” Phoenix coach Mike D’Antoni said.

Phoenix never trailed after Nash assisted on Quentin Richardson’s four-point play with 7:23 left in the first quarter. Nash capped a 14-2 run with a 3-pointer, giving Phoenix a 10-point lead.

Stoudemire picked up his third foul early in the second quarter and played just seven minutes in the first half. But he scored six straight points to start the second half and capped a 14-4 run with a hook shot, giving Phoenix a 20-point lead.

Stoudemire converted a three-point play to make it a 29-point lead with 4:45 left in the third. Nash recorded his 12th assist on the dunk.

“I came out the second half with a vengeance,” Stoudemire said.

Phoenix led by as many as 34 points in the third. Toronto never got closer than 18 points the rest of the way.


Alston won’t be paid and will not be allowed to practice until Thursday. Toronto coach Sam Mitchell wouldn’t say what Alston did, but said he needs to control his emotions. Mitchell thinks his point guard shoots too much. The Raptors are 1-8 when Alston scores 20 or more points. … Marion had 12 rebounds in the first quarter, one short of a team record for a quarter. … Fans loudly booed a Vince Carter dunk that was shown on the videoboard. Toronto traded Carter to New Jersey on Dec. 20 and Carter has since acknowledged that he didn’t always give his all with the Raptors. … Toronto’s Morris Peterson made a layup blindfolded after a Phoenix player knocked his headband over his eyes. A smiling Peterson then converted a three-point play with a free throw. … Toronto is 0-2 since Rose returned to the starting lineup. … Eric Williams, a defensive specialist, played just eight minutes. Williams lost his job to Rose.

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Top Performers

 Top Performers
S. Marion S. Marion
8-16,  21 Pts
17 Rebs, 3 Assists
M. Peterson M. Peterson
9-20,  24 Pts
6 Rebs, 3 Assists

Team Stat Leaders