NBA regular season

Booker stars as Suns tame Grizzlies even without Durant, Beal


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Booker stars as Suns tame Grizzlies even without Durant, Beal

SCORING MACHINE. Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker (1) handles the ball as Memphis Grizzlies guard Vince Williams Jr. (5) defends during the first half at FedExForum.

Petre Thomas/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

Devin Booker posts a season-high mark in points to lift a Suns side missing stars Kevin Durant and Bradley Beal to their sixth consecutive win

Devin Booker scored a season-high 40 points to fuel the visiting Phoenix Suns to a 110-89 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies in an NBA in-season tournament game on Friday, November 24 (Saturday, November 25, Manila time).

Booker made 15 of 21 shots from the floor and added 5 rebounds, 4 assists, and 4 steals.

Eric Gordon scored 20 points as the Suns overcame the absence of Kevin Durant (right foot soreness) and Bradley Beal (low back strain) to win their sixth in a row overall and fifth straight game on the road.

Grayson Allen and Jordan Goodwin added 14 points for Phoenix, which shot 52% from the floor and benefited from scoring the last 14 points of the second quarter to seize a 62-49 lead at halftime.

Memphis’ Santi Aldama scored 21 points and Derrick Rose had 17 points on 8-for-9 shooting from the floor.

David Roddy added 14 points off the bench and Jaren Jackson Jr. collected 13 points and 7 rebounds for the Grizzlies, who have lost their first seven home games of the season.

Memphis stayed within reach by seeing its bench players outscore its Suns counterparts by a 37-24 margin.

Aldama drained a three-pointer to stake Memphis to a 49-48 lead with 4:17 remaining in the second quarter. Keita Bates-Dip made a dunk to ignite the Suns, who saw Booker sink three jumpers and Gordon and Allen each drain a three-pointer before halftime.

Booker made a three-pointer to push Phoenix’s lead to 75-57 midway into the third before Aldama responded with one of his own and a dunk in transition to ignite a 16-6 run to end the quarter.

Rose drained a pair of jumpers and John Konchar made a free throw to trim the Suns’ lead to 84-78 early in the fourth quarter.

Goodwin, however, scored 10 points and Gordon added a three-pointer as part of a 16-4 run by Phoenix to seal the win. –

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