Miner Editorial | Let’s go hoop

In this era of partisan politics, culture wars and red meat, where discord dominates the national discourse, sports can bridge the great divide. And the ascendant Phoenix Suns are a source of statewide pride as they march, seemingly unimpeded, to a National Basketball Association championship.

Phoenix leads the Milwaukee Bucks 2-0 in a best-of-seven series. The action shifts to Milwaukee on Sunday with the tipoff for Game 3 slated for 5 p.m. Arizona time on ABC. You should watch, maybe talk about it at the post office or the water cooler.

The Suns are emblematic of unselfish dedication to a shared cause that the residents of this state, and this nation, would be wise to emulate. Congress, take note.

It’s a sad state of affairs. Civility has left the building in 2021, but that’s because of the topics of conversation. Instead of the election audit, critical race theory, biased media, migration, inflation, insurrection and rising crime, let’s talk about the Suns.

We think we can all agree that Suns’ star Devin Booker, who will represent the USA and Arizona in the Olympic Games, is getting his just rewards, after sticking with Phoenix through trying times. This is a team that amassed more losses than any other in the five years preceding this championship run.

But in what has become a magical season, they’ve cruised to the finals, beating a trio of blue-state teams, including the Los Angeles Lakers.

What an amazing cast of characters.

There’s veteran Chris Paul, the “point god,” who at age 36 has appeared in dozens and dozens of NBA playoff games with no rings to show for it. Until – and here’s our prediction – this year.

And Deandre Ayton, another up-and-comer, dominating in the paint, coming into his own.

And Cameron Payne, who brought his NBA career back to life, rising like a phoenix after being relegated to the G-League, as well as a basketball backwater in Shanxi, China, just a few years ago.

Don’t forget the man who pulls the strings. Head coach Monty Williams has cobbled this mix of talented veterans and rookies into a winner, nay, a force, just by being a decent and caring coach. “I tell the guys to go hoop,” he told the Associated Press.

Let’s do that. Let’s set aside the animosity for a couple of hours and watch the Suns. Let’s go hoop.

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