for this game

Suns rip hapless Clippers

Feb 18, 2009 - 7:15 AM PHOENIX (Ticker) -- Leandro Barbosa scored 24 points to lead the Phoenix Suns to a 140-100 thrashing of the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday.

Amare Stoudemire added 23 points to make the Suns easy winners in Alvin Gentry's debut as interim coach. Gentry replaced Terry Porter, who was fired on Monday after a 28-23 start.

Phoenix looked like the Suns of old running out to an 81-49 lead at the half, matching a U.S. Airways Center record for points in a half.

"We established our inside game with Shaq. He did a great job. We got in transition our bench played well it was a total team effort there wasn't just one guy that stood out," Gentry said. "We still have a lot of work to do it is just one game."

Eric Gordon scored 24 points for the Clippers, who lost forward Zach Randolph in the first quarter after he was ejected for punching Phoenix's Louis Amundson.

"They were running on us," Gordon said. "They ran past us. They had so many transition points just going for layups. All five guys ran hard the whole game."

The Suns got everyone involved early and raced out to an 11-2 lead. They finished the quarter with a 41-26 edge and added 40 more points in the second quarter to effectively put the game away.

"To start the game, we didn't have a whole lot of bigs," Clippers coach Mike Dunleavy said. "Zach getting thrown out of the game was just a nightmare for us trying to play against their size. That's where it all kind of started for us."

In case the Clippers were entertaining the thought of a wild comeback, the Suns scored another 37 points in the third quarter.

"We just happened to shot the ball extremely well tonight and those guys were shorthanded without Camby," Gentry said. "I liked our effort and what we did but we are not ready to crown ourselves NBA champs. Some of the guys are accustomed to what we tried to do in the past we just have to get the other guys to understand what we are trying to do."

To illustrate just how different things were for the Suns, consider that they scored 40 points in a quarter just twice in 51 games under Porter but did it in each of the first two against the Clippers.

"It's not fair to take this game and say it is an indictment of what Terry tried to do," Phoenix guard Steve Nash said. "Terry tried really hard to improve this team. It's just one game and we should not get too carried away."

Phoenix had its offense in gear even without guard Jason Richardson, who served a one-game suspension without pay for conduct detrimental to the team. Richardson was arrested on Sunday on allegations he was driving 55 miles per hour over the speed limit with his 3-year-old son unrestrained in the car.