"No, I already did what I said I was going to do to them,"
Arenas said. "The next team is Portland. One down, one to go."
Arenas dropped 54 points on the Suns in an overtime victory at
Phoenix last month, his way of unleashing his frustrations against
anyone who might have had anything to do with his not making the
U.S. team for last summer's world championships. Suns coach Mike
D'Antoni and Portland coach Nate McMillan were assistants on that
team, which was led by Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski.
In fact, Arenas, who has scored 50-plus three times this season,
wrote on his nba.com blog that the Portland game will be 50-point
game No. 4.
"The most important game is on Feb. 11," Arenas wrote. "Well,
it's not the most important, but that's the game I'm going to say
is my next 50-pointer. ... Tune in. I think ESPN or TNT needs to
pick that game up."
After hearing all this, D'Antoni did the only thing he could --
he cracked an Arenas-worthy joke.
"I can't wait to see what he does against Duke," D'Antoni
said. "He's gonna KILL Duke."
So, with the revenge angle out of the way, all that's left for
Tuesday is a matchup between two MVP candidates -- Phoenix's Steve
Nash and Arenas -- in a game between featuring the two highest
scoring teams in the league, both in contention for a No. 1
And there's one more thing. The Suns have won 13 straight. They
also had a 15-game streak earlier this season. Guess who ended it?
That's right. The Wizards.
"I'm not even going to address that," Wizards forward Caron
Butler said. "Because I don't want to jinx us."
The Wizards are on a run of their own, a 10-game home winning
streak, the longest since the Verizon Center opened in 1997. The
home fans have recently been serenading Arenas with chants of
"M-V-P," but Arenas has consistently said that Nash is the
"He's leading, and that's it. If it ended today, he's MVP.
Period," Arenas said. "When you're playing that well as a team,
you going to always be a candidate. He has a great supporting cast.
They're on a streak again. When you go on streaks like that, it's
hard to knock him from being MVP."
The Suns don't seem upset by memories of the 54-point game, or
by any of Arenas' antics. Like everyone else, they realize it's
just Arenas being Arenas.
"He doesn't do anything that's necessarily disrespectful,"
Nash said. "I think he plays the game with a great spirit and he
certainly is his own person. I think everyone commends the great
season he's having."