by Marcel Mutoni

The Suns are off to a typically strong start, going 6-2 and sitting atop the Pacific Division. Nash is doing what he does, Amare is regaining his health, Marion hasn’t asked to be traded, and everyone else is pulling their weight. Well, almost everyone.

Coach D’Antoni doesn’t like the way the home crowd is behaving; he’d like to see a little more fire from the faithful. Here’s what he said following Tuesday night’s win over the hapless Knicks:

“And the crowd is worse than we are. They are deader than we are. Are they waiting until April to yell at us? Well, we are yelling at them.”

Yesterday, after practice, the coach wasn’t in an apologetic mood and stressed that the ticket buyers should appreciate what they’re seeing on the floor a little bit more.

“The whole atmosphere – us, them, everybody – was just kind of down and blah,” D’Antoni said. “There’s no reason to be, because they’re going to have plenty of times (going) into the arena where there’s not much happening. Right now, there’s something happening. They should enjoy it, like we should enjoy it.”

Man, if D’Antoni thinks the Phoenix crowd is blasé, he should try coaching in Los Angeles. By the fourth quarter, the only people left in the gym are usually the players and the coaches.

Say, during the next Suns home game, the crowd isn’t enthused enough, wouldn’t it be great if the Suns bench stood up in unison and started booing them?