Suns try to get on track versus Boston

( - The Phoenix Suns are not playing like a team with hopes of making a postseason push.

Losers in four straight and seven of the last eight games, the Suns look to remain in the playoff hunt when they host the Boston Celtics Monday night.

The Suns suffered a 112-107 loss in Chicago on Friday, one night after a 111-109 defeat at Minnesota. In the recent loss to the Bulls, Brandon Knight made his Phoenix debut and scored 13 points with five assists in 24 minutes off the bench. Knight was acquired from Milwaukee on Thursday.

"The game came kind of fast, just trying to recognize what the Suns are doing ... what we're doing as a group," Knight said afterward.

P.J. Tucker led the Suns with 20 points, Marcus Morris posted 17 off the bench and Eric Bledsoe scored 13 points to go along with eight assists and seven rebounds for Phoenix, which shot well at 53.4 percent and dropped its seventh in a row on the road.

The Suns led 81-73 late in the third quarter, but the Bulls went on a 25-8 run to take a 98-89 lead with 6:38 remaining in the game. The Suns got as close as a point in the final minute.

Phoenix is 16-11 at home this season and sits two games off the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

The Suns are third in the NBA in scoring with 106.0 ppg, but are third-to-last in opponents' scoring at 105.0 ppg.

Boston is scoring at a 101.0 ppg clip and will conclude a three-game western trek Monday evening. The Celtics lost at Sacramento on Friday, then dropped a 118-111 overtime decision to the LA Lakers Sunday.

Los Angeles posted 33 points in the fourth quarter, after scoring just 17 in the third, and posted a 12-5 scoring advantage in OT for the win.

But the victory didn't come that easy.

Celtics guard Avery Bradley scored eight points in the final 30 seconds of regulation to send the game into overtime, including a huge 3-pointer from the left side at the buzzer. The Lakers scored the first six points in overtime and Boston never recovered.

Jae Crowder had 22 points and seven boards, Isaiah Thomas netted 21 points and Bradley finished with 20 for the Celtics, who have dropped three of their last four games and are winless in three straight on the road.

"The Lakers made tough shots, credit them. Jeremy Lin killed us all night. We weren't as good in overtime as we were at the end of the game," Celtics coach Brad Stevens said.

The Celtics announced Sunday that Jared Sullinger will be out for the rest of the season due to a stress fracture in his left foot. They are only 8-18 on the road and will begin a three-game homestand Wednesday versus New York, Charlotte and Golden State.

Boston was dealt a 118-114 loss at home by the Suns on Nov. 17. Markieff Morris scored a game-high 30 points for Phoenix, which has won three in a row and seven of the last 10 games in this series.

The Celtics are 64-54 all-time against the Suns.