NBA regular season

Book it: Suns’ Devin Booker pounds Pelicans anew with 52

Reuters

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Book it: Suns’ Devin Booker pounds Pelicans anew with 52

MAIN MAN. Pelicans forward Herbert Jones (right) tries to block a rebound attempt by Suns guard Devin Booker.

Stephen Lew/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

Suns hotshot Devin Booker unleashes 52 points against the Pelicans, just a season after he also torched them with 58

Devin Booker scored a season-high 52 points and the hot-shooting Phoenix Suns defeated the host New Orleans Pelicans, 123-109, on Friday night, January 19 (Saturday, January 20, Manila time).

Booker, who scored 58 points against the Pelicans in a game last season, made 18-of-30 field goal attempts, including 6-of-11 from three-point range, and sank all 10 of his free throws. His career high is 70 points, set against the Boston Celtics in 2017.

Kevin Durant added 26 points, Bradley Beal scored 13, Grayson Allen had 12 and Jusuf Nurkic finished with 15 rebounds, 9 assists, and 5 points for the Suns, who won for the ninth time in 12 games.

Zion Williamson scored 24, Brandon Ingram had 17 points and 11 assists, Jonas Valanciunas added 16 points and 11 rebounds, and CJ McCollum and Jordan Hawkins scored 13 each to lead New Orleans, which had won eight of its previous 11 games.

The Pelicans, who made a franchise-record 25 three-pointers on 47 attempts in a 20-point victory over the Charlotte Hornets on Wednesday sank just 10-of-42 three-point tries on Friday.

Booker scored 10 points and Durant had 5 as Phoenix expanded its 17-point halftime lead to 84-58 early in the third quarter. The Suns led by as many as 30 in the fourth quarter.

Phoenix, which finished its Tuesday game on a 32-8 run to overcome a 22-point deficit in the final nine minutes and defeat the Sacramento Kings, was just as hot to start against New Orleans.

Booker scored 8 of the Suns’ first 9 points and had 15 as the visitors raced to a 31-20 lead.

He reached 25 points after his three-pointer gave Phoenix its biggest lead at 15 points before Williamson’s layup trimmed the deficit to 41-28 at the end of the first quarter.

Beal scored 9 points during a 14-4 run that expanded the Suns’ lead to 55-32 early in the second quarter.

Phoenix led by 23 points on four more occasions before the Pelicans trimmed the gap to 69-52 entering halftime. – Rappler.com

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