CASA GRANDE, AZ — Inspired by the Phoenix Suns fever sweeping across the state, fans have been finding many ways to pay tribute to their favorite team and favorite players.
For Carlos Jimenez from Casa Grande, the best way to showcase his Suns pride has been to do so on a canvas, through his art.
"That's really, the best way that I know how to pay tribute, you know, through my artwork," said Jimenez.
For two weeks now Jimenez has been using every spare moment to sketch and paint some of his favorite Suns players.
"The first one that I painted was Chris Paul. That was kind of inspired by the way that Chris Paul plays. Never really the same performance, but it's always a great performance," said Jimenez.
He hopes his art brought to life not just a moment, but the essence of the player's spirit. One of his favorite players is Devin Booker. Jimenez says he admires him for all the charitable work he does off the court and in his personal life.
Portrait of @DeandreAyton of the Phoenix @Suns I painted. Its an oil painting on canvas I would like to donate to Deandre or to the Suns team! Not selling it, I would like you to have it! @DevinBook @CP3 #PhoenixSuns #NBAFinals #DominAyton #RallyTheValley pic.twitter.com/rmV8VV8ahX— Carlos Jimenez Artist (@cjimenezartist) July 3, 2021
"With the Devin Booker painting, no matter what, if the team is not having a great game, if they are having a great game, that guy is always smiling," said Jimenez.
The piece he is proudest of though is his painting of the man known as the "Voice of the Suns," radio broadcast announcer Al McCoy.
"Al McCoy, you have done such an amazing job, calling these games for the last, you know, the 20 years that I have been listening to them. I hope you continue to do so for 10, 20, 28 more years," said Jimenez.
Jimenez is now working on sketching the outline of Suns player Jae Crowder.
"Jae Crowder is just really tough. He's tough on the court. Kind of a no-nonsense guy. I like that. I think he's going to be very instrumental in the finals," said Jimenez.
Despite the popularity of his artwork among "Suns Nation," Jimenez says the special portraits he is painting will not be for sale. He hopes to give them as a gift to the players.
"This is my tribute to you to the team. These paintings that I'm creating, these are all for you. I hope you hope you like what you see. These are a gift to you," said Jimenez.