Bismack Biyombo does the little things.
Rebounds, blocks and setting good screens — regular plays an NBA center makes — may pay huge dividends especially if the Phoenix Suns want to advance past the Dallas Mavericks in the best-of-seven second-round playoff series.
The matchup is tied 2-2. Game 5 starts at 7 p.m. tonight at Footprint Center in downtown Phoenix.
In Game 2, backup center Biyombo had 9 points and three rebounds in 18 minutes of work in the 129-109 Phoenix Suns victory on May 4. On Sunday, Dallas tied up the series with a 111-101 victory over the Suns.
“I mean, I think it’s a must to do your job, you know,” Biyombo said. “I think that’s going to allow us to be the type of team that we have to be. So the little things might not necessarily show up on the stat sheet. But it must be done and it must be done correctly.”
Adjustments should be made as the Suns must win two out of the next three games to advance to the NBA Western Conference Finals.
This year’s Suns team has good chemistry and team members acclimate well with each other, Biyombo said.
“It’s just a blessing to be in a position where guys allow you to be you and you just get out there and help them,” Biyombo said. “They help me, it’s vice versa, you know? I compliment them and they compliment me. I think that’s what makes our team so great — we compliment each other. Everybody’s got something special.”
This season, the Suns have received plenty of praise. The team won a franchise high 64 games and wing Mikal Bridges finished second in voting for the NBA Defensive Player of the Year Award.
On Monday it was announced Coach Monty Williams won the NBA Coach of the Year Award for leading the Phoenix Suns to the NBA’s best record.
“I mean, obviously, it’s amazing,” Biyombo said. “But more than anything, we get an opportunity to compete for something...What’s also exciting is obviously, you see happening where our coaching staff coaches the (2022 NBA) All-Stars. You have (Chris Paul), you have Devin Booker making the (NBA) All-Star team, the coach (Monty Williams) winning (NBA) Coach of the Year. I think all these things are a part of the excitement.”
The fact the Suns are hosting tonight’s game on its home court matters, according to the coach.
“You have to take advantage of it,” Williams said. “We worked our tails off to be in this position. That’s why I always — not laugh — when people say the regular season doesn’t mean anything. Yeah it does. It allows for you to create this opportunity.”
The coach has helped to build a positive culture in the locker room and on the court since he took the reigns two seasons ago.
Suns players don’t care about individual statistics, Biyombo said. Being selfless makes the team culture special.
“I’ve been on teams like that (where players cared about numbers),” Biyombo said. “But they have never reached this level. You know, teams that have reached this level whether they have won a championship, they care about winning more than they care about numbers.”
“We need to win the game — that simple,” Biyombo said. “There’s no corrections, there’s no Xs and Os. Tomorrow we need to win. We are going to win the game tomorrow.”
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