Chris Paul’s Absence Could Actually Benefit Suns Long-Term
By Evan SideryDuring the Phoenix Suns’ final game before the All-Star break, Chris Paul suffered a fractured thumb avulsion. With Paul on the floor, Phoenix is scoring 115.9 points per 100 possessions — 11 points better than when Paul sits for the Suns. Before Paul arrived, though, Booker had very important moments of growth as a facilitator in the Suns’ down years. Lineup combinations featuring Booker flanked by wings is a fun small-ball idea (Booker, Mikal Bridges, Cameron Johnson, Jae Crowder, Torrey Craig). The Suns’ trio around Booker — Ayton, Bridges, Johnson — should take pressure off the team’s 25-year-old star, but show potential moments of growth as well.thewestsidegazette.com
Devin Booker scores 35 points, Suns beat Blazers 127-121
(AP Photo/Craig Mitchelldyer)Devin Booker returned from the knee injury that kept him out of the All-Star Game to score 35 points and the Phoenix Suns beat the Portland Trail Blazers 127-121 on Thursday night for their fifth straight victory. Chris Paul added 19 points for Phoenix, and Mikal Bridges scored 16 of his 18 points in the first half. “I think we had some good energy going into the fourth quarter,” Booker said. The Blazers won 127-117. AdTrail Blazers: The Blazers wore their gray and black Nike “earned” jerseys for the first time.
Suns keep rolling, top 76ers 120-111 for 5th straight win
Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker (1) shoots against Philadelphia 76ers during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Saturday, Feb. 13, 2021, in Phoenix. Booker scored 36 points, Chris Paul added 18 points and 10 assists and the rising Phoenix Suns beat the Philadelphia 76ers 120-111 on Saturday for their fifth straight victory. Saric and Jae Crowder each hit 3-pointers to open the fourth quarter and extend the Suns' lead to 92-81. The Suns had an 11-2 run which gave them a 113-99 lead with 3:15 left to close out the win. E’Twaun Moore had 11 points on 5-of-6 shooting, Cam Johnson had nine points and Crowder added eight points and four rebounds.
Booker, Bridges lead new-look Suns past Mavericks 106-102
Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker (1) drives on Dallas Mavericks guard Jalen Brunson during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Dec. 23, 2020, in Phoenix. At least for the first game, the Suns' revamped backcourt performed almost exactly as hoped. Booker scored 22 points, Mikal Bridges added 18 and Phoenix edged the Dallas Mavericks 106-102 on Wednesday in the season opener for both teams. “I like guys who are willing to take the shots,” Suns coach Monty Williams said. Luka Doncic cut the Suns' lead to three with a dunk but after a Booker miss, Bridges grabbed the offensive rebound and Phoenix closed out the victory.
Suns top Mavs to keep playoff hopes alive, go 8-0 in bubble
Dario Saric scored 16 points and Cameron Payne and Cameron Johnson each added 15 for the Suns. Dallas was already locked into a playoff matchup with the Los Angeles Clippers, so the starters played limited minutes. Luka Doncic, who had averaged 32 points, 11 rebounds and 11.3 assists in the bubble, finished with 18 points in just over 13 minutes. Booker scored 23 points on 9-for-13 shooting before the break. Suns: Either season over or will be in a play-in game against Memphis on Saturday.