1970–71 Phoenix Suns season

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
1970–71 Phoenix Suns season
Head coach Cotton Fitzsimmons
General manager Jerry Colangelo
Owner(s) Richard Bloch
Arena Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum
Results
Record 48–34 (.585)
Place Division: 3rd (Midwest)
Conference: 5th (Western)
Playoff finish Did not qualify

Stats @ Basketball-Reference.com
Radio KTAR
< 1969–70 1971–72 >

The 1970–71 Phoenix Suns season was the third season for the Phoenix Suns of the National Basketball Association. Head coach Cotton Fitzsimmons lead the Suns, in the NBA's first season which separated the teams into both conferences and divisions as the league continued to gain more teams. It was the first season the Suns would be without the services of All-Star guard Gail Goodrich. With a 48–34 record (fourth best in the league), the Suns set the NBA record for the team with the best winning percentage not to make the playoffs. The team would break their own record the next year with a 49–33 finish. All home games were played at Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum.

The Suns were led in scoring by Dick Van Arsdale with 21.9 points per game. Connie Hawkins finished the season averaging 20.9 points and 9.1 rebounds per contest. Paul Silas led the Suns with 12.5 rebounds per game, the highest-ever average in Suns history, while Neal Walk garnered 8.2 rebounds to go with his 12.9 points a game.

Goodrich, a native of Los Angeles and who played college ball at UCLA, was traded before the season back to the Los Angeles Lakers, where he had played before being acquired in the expansion draft of 1968. In exchange, the Suns obtained the 29-year old 7-footer Mel Counts, who was coming off a career-high 12.6 average in points. Goodrich would go on to play nine more seasons in the NBA, six of those with the Lakers. During those six years, he would average 22.3 points per game, appear in four All-Star Games and be named to an All-NBA First Team. Meanwhile, Counts averaged 11 points and 6.3 rebounds in his first of two seasons with the Suns.

Offseason[edit]

NBA Draft[edit]

Main article: 1970 NBA Draft
Round Pick Player Position Nationality College
1 10 Greg Howard Forward  United States New Mexico
2 27 Fred Taylor Guard  United States Texas-Pan Am
3 29 Joe DePre Guard  United States St. John's
3 44 Greg McDivitt Forward  United States Ohio
3 48 Vann Williford Forward  United States North Carolina State
4 61 Bob Lienhard Center  United States Georgia
5 78 John Canine Guard  United States Ohio
6 95 Joe Thomas Forward  United States Marquette
7 112 Heyward Dotson Guard  United States Columbia
8 129 Steve Patterson Center  United States UCLA
9 146 Carl Ashley Forward  United States Wyoming
10 163 Gerhardus Schreur Forward  United States Arizona State
11 178 Jim Walls Guard  United States Clark
12 190 Ric Cobb Center  United States Marquette
13 200 Fred Carpenter Forward  United States Hawaii
14 210 Chad Calabria Guard  United States Iowa
15 219 Walt Williams Forward  United States Miami (Ohio)

Roster[edit]

Phoenix Suns roster
Players Coaches
Pos. # Nat. Name Height Weight DOB (Y-M-D) From
C 31 United States Counts, Mel 7 ft 0 in (2.13 m) 230 lb (104 kg) 1941-10-16 Oregon State
F 16 United States Green, Lamar 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 210 lb (95 kg) 1947-03-22 Morehead State
G 23 United States Harris, Art 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m) 185 lb (84 kg) 1947-01-13 Stanford
G 11 United States Haskins, Clem 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m) 195 lb (88 kg) 1943-07-11 Western Kentucky
F/C 42 United States Hawkins, Connie 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m) 210 lb (95 kg) 1942-07-17 Iowa
F 44 United States Howard, Greg 6 ft 9 in (2.06 m) 215 lb (98 kg) 1948-01-08 New Mexico
F 29 United States Silas, Paul 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 220 lb (100 kg) 1943-07-12 Creighton
G 10 United States Taylor, Fred 6 ft 5 in (1.96 m) 180 lb (82 kg) 1948-02-05 Texas-Pan Am
F 40 United States Thomas, Joe 6 ft 6 in (1.98 m) 205 lb (93 kg) 1948-03-09 Marquette
G/F 5 United States Van Arsdale, Dick 6 ft 5 in (1.96 m) 210 lb (95 kg) 1943-02-22 Indiana
C 41 United States Walk, Neal 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m) 220 lb (100 kg) 1948-07-29 Florida
G/F 25 United States Wetzel, John 6 ft 5 in (1.96 m) 190 lb (86 kg) 1944-10-22 Virginia Tech
Head coach


Athletic trainer(s)

Legend
  • (C) Team captain
  • (DP) Unsigned draft pick
  • (FA) Free agent
  • (S) Suspended
  • Injured Injured

Depth chart[edit]

Pos. Starter Bench Reserve Inactive
C Neal Walk Mel Counts
PF Connie Hawkins Lamar Green Greg Howard
SF Paul Silas John Wetzel Joe Thomas
SG Dick Van Arsdale Fred Taylor
PG Clem Haskins Art Harris

Regular season[edit]

Standings[edit]

Midwest Division W L PCT GB Home Road Neutral Div
y-Milwaukee Bucks 66 16 .805 34–2 28–13 4–1 14–4
x-Chicago Bulls 51 31 .622 15 30–11 17–19 4–1 7–11
Phoenix Suns 48 34 .585 18 27–14 19–20 2–0 9–9
Detroit Pistons 45 37 .549 21 24–17 20–19 1–1 6–12
# Western Conference
Team W L PCT
1 z-Milwaukee Bucks 66 16 .805
2 y-Los Angeles Lakers 48 34 .585
3 x-Chicago Bulls 51 31 .622
4 x-San Francisco Warriors 41 41 .500
5 Phoenix Suns 48 34 .585
6 Detroit Pistons 45 37 .549
7 San Diego Rockets 40 42 .488
8 Seattle SuperSonics 38 44 .463
9 Portland Trail Blazers 29 53 .354


Game log[edit]

1970–71 game log
Total: 48–34 (Home: 27–14; Road: 21–20)
1970–71 season schedule

Team-by-team results[edit]

Opponent Home Road Total All-time record Suns leading scorer Opp. leading scorer
Atlanta Hawks 2–0 2–1 4–1 8–9 (.471%) Dick Van Arsdale (21.8) Lou Hudson (26.0)
Baltimore Bullets 1–1 1–2 2–3 5–12 (.294%) Dick Van Arsdale (21.8) Earl Monroe (26.0)
Boston Celtics 2–0 1–2 3–2 7–10 (.412%) Dick Van Arsdale (24.4) John Havlicek (32.0)
Buffalo Braves 2–0 1–1 3–1 3–1 (.750%) Dick Van Arsdale (22.5) Don May (20.0)
Chicago Bulls 2–1 1–2 3–3 7–12 (.368%) Connie Hawkins (21.8) Bob Love (25.2)
Cincinnati Royals 2–1 2–0 4–1 9–8 (.529%) Clem Haskins (27.2) Tom Van Arsdale (20.0)
Cleveland Cavaliers 2–0 2–0 4–0 4–0 (1.000%) Dick Van Arsdale (23.0) John Johnson (15.3)
Detroit Pistons 2–1 2–1 4–2 9–9 (.500%) Dick Van Arsdale (25.3) Dave Bing (28.3)
Los Angeles Lakers 2–1 2–1 4–2 8–11 (.421%) Dick Van Arsdale (19.7) Jerry West (28.8)
Milwaukee Bucks 1–2 1–2 2–4 4–16 (.200%) Connie Hawkins (24.0) Lew Alcindor (37.2)
New York Knicks 1–2 0–2 1–4 2–15 (.118%) Dick Van Arsdale (22.8) Dick Barnett (19.8)
Philadelphia 76ers 0–2 2–1 2–3 5–12 (.294%) Connie Hawkins (26.8) Billy Cunningham (29.6)
Portland Trail Blazers 2–0 2–0 4–0 4–0 (1.000%) Dick Van Arsdale (28.5) Geoff Petrie (27.5)
San Diego Rockets 2–1 0–3 2–4 10–11 (.476%) Connie Hawkins (20.8) Elvin Hayes (31.3)
San Francisco Warriors 1–2 2–0 3–2 8–9 (.471%) Connie Hawkins (24.7) Jerry Lucas (24.6)
Seattle SuperSonics 3–0 0–2 3–2 10–8 (.556%) Dick Van Arsdale (23.8) Dick Snyder (17.8)

Awards and honors[edit]

All-Star[edit]

Season[edit]

Player statistics[edit]

Legend
  GP Games played  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field-goal percentage  FT%  Free-throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game
 PPG  Points per game

Season[edit]

Player GP MPG FG% FT% RPG APG PPG
Mel Counts 80 20.9 .457 .753 6.3 1.7 11.0
Lamar Green 68 19.5 .453 .604 6.9 0.8 5.9
Art Harris 56 17.0 .411 .611 1.8 2.4 8.3
Clem Haskins 82 33.7 .440 .784 4.0 4.7 17.8
Connie Hawkins 71 37.5 .434 .816^ 9.1 4.5 20.9
Greg Howard 44 9.7 .393 .638 2.7 0.6 3.9
Paul Silas 81 36.3 .428 .685 12.5 3.0 11.9
Fred Taylor 54 10.2 .387 .624 1.6 0.9 5.5
Joe Thomas 39 5.2 .267 .450 1.1 0.4 1.4
Dick Van Arsdale 81 39.0 .452 .811 3.9 4.1 21.9
Neal Walk 82 24.8 .451 .765 8.2 1.4 12.9
John Wetzel 70 15.6 .431 .822^ 2.2 1.6 4.7

^ - Minimum 350 free throw attempts.

Transactions[edit]

Trades[edit]

April 23, 1970
To Chicago Bulls---- To Phoenix Suns----
May 20, 1970
To Los Angeles Lakers---- To Phoenix Suns----
July 8, 1970
To New York Knicks----
  • United States Heywood Dotson
To Phoenix Suns----

Free agents[edit]