The Boston Celtics looked like the best team in the NBA on Wednesday night, December 7 (Thursday, December 8, Manila time), turning in a dominant effort on the road by beating the Phoenix Suns, 125-98.
Five players scored in double figures for the Celtics, who had a 45-point lead with 5:30 remaining in the third quarter.
Boston’s Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum each scored a team-high 25 points. Brown added 7 rebounds and 3 assists. Tatum also had 5 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 steals.
The Celtics received 16 points from Malcom Brogdon, 14 points from Grant Williams, and 12 points from Luke Kornet. Blake Griffin aded 9 points and a game-high 9 rebounds.
Boston raised its road record to 10-3 and improved to 7-0 against Western Conference teams. The Suns fell to 12-3 at home.
Josh Okogie scored a game-high 28 points for Phoenix. Devin Booker (17), Cameron Payne (12), and Torrey Craig (11) also scored in double figures for the Suns.
Phoenix shot 39.8% from the field (37-of-93) and 25% from three-point range (8-for-32). The Suns also committed 18 turnovers.
Phoenix guard Chris Paul, a 12-time NBA All-Star, returned to the court after missing the last 14 games with a heel injury. He finished Wednesday’s game with 4 points, 4 assists, and 4 rebounds in 24 minutes.
Paul, 37, was injured during a November 7 game against the Philadelphia 76ers. He entered Wednesday’s matchup averaging 9.5 points and 9.4 assists in 10 games this season. The Suns went 9-5 when in his absence.
Boston led 31-21 after one quarter, 69-42 at halftime and 104-65 entering the fourth. Phoenix shot 35.4% from the floor (17-of-48) in the first half, when it was 1-of-16 on three-point attempts.
Boston played without starting center Al Horford, who entered the NBA’s health and safety protocols Wednesday.
It was the third game of a six-game road trip for the Celtics, who improved to 3-0 on the trip. – Rappler.com