Dario Saric steps up big, helping to boost Phoenix Suns to third straight win

The Suns have risen from their lowest point this season in the Western conference standings at 12th to seventh within a week after they edged the second-place

Memphis Grizzlies, 112-110, on Sunday. Among the key backup contributors was Dario Saric. The Suns big, who's started in 11 games this season (averaging 5.2

points, 3.3 rebounds in 13.5 minutes per game), had one of his best performances, getting 14 points (4-of-5 shooting), team-high eight rebounds, four assists, three steals in 20

minutes). Saric is gaining more playing time lately, after not seeing much early in the season. But the Suns have dealt with a stering of injuries to key

players, especially over the past month, and that has created more opportunity for Saric. Start the day smarter. Get all the news you need in your inbox each morning.

“Man, Dario is special," point guard Chris Paul after the game. "I actually went into the gym (Sunday) morning around 9:30-10 just to check out everything to make

sure I was good to play. When I walked in the gym, Dario was in there sweating getting shots up." Paul (heel, hip) was among those nursing recent injuries. He

returned Sunday. Other have included Devin Booker (groin), Cameron Payne (foot), Landry Shamet (concussion, hip), Cameron Johnson (knee), and Deandre Ayton (ankle). Saric himself

missed all of last season with a torn ACL suffered in the NBA finals at the end of the previous season.