Devin Booker didn’t hold back in the latest battle with the Phoenix Suns newest rival.
Booker dropped a ridiculous 58 points on Saturday night to lead them past Zion Williamson and the New Orleans Pelicans 118-114 at the Footprint Center. Booker made six 3-pointers and shot 21-of-35 from the field in 42 minutes in the win, and eclipsed the 12,000-point mark in his career — which made him the sixth-youngest player to hit that milestone. He’s also the first player in franchise history with five 50-point games.
The Pelicans led most of the way on Saturday, and built up a massive 24 point lead midway through the third quarter. That, though, is when the Suns turned it on. They closed out the third on a 25-6 run that cut the deficit to just five points to start the fourt, completely wiping away the Pelicans’ advantage.
The Suns finally re-took the lead with 5:24 left in the game after a Chris Paul 3-pointer, which was their first lead since the opening minutes. From there, the two teams bounced back and forth before surging ahead late while holding the Pelicans to just two points in a four-minute span to seal the four-point win.
Outside of Booker — who at one point scored 25 straight for Phoenix — Chris Paul dropped 18 points and had eight assists for the Suns. He hit a clutch 3-pointer with just 20 seconds left in the game to give them a six-point lead, too.
Miles Bridges added 15 points for Phoenix, and Bismack Biyombo finished with 11 points and six rebounds. The Suns have now won two straight after their five-game losing skid, which included two contentious games with the Pelicans at the Smoothie King Center.
Williamson led the Pelicans with 30 points and nine assists in the loss. C.J. McCollum added 27 points while shooting 11-of-19 from the field, and Jonas Valanciunas finished with 12 points and eight rebounds. The Pelicans have now lost three straight.
“Great players, they get into a rhythm, they get it going and you have to up your level of physicality … I just didn’t think we did it aggressive enough to make an impact on [Booker],” Pelicans coach Willie Green said, via Bally Sports. “A lot of it also is Booker, so I don’t want to take anything away from him. It’s both, it’s him making shots and it’s us not being more aggressive.”