We don’t stop the Suns anymore. In full rise, the franchise of Arizona went to type the defending champions on their floor tonight. Despite a red card for Devin Booker, despite a sharp LeBron James, Phoenix did the job against the Lakers and now finds himself in… second place in the West.
Just named player of the month in the West, Devin Booker has just realized that his team can do the job without him too. Sent off in the middle of the third quarter without us really understanding why, the All-Star full-back saw his Suns hold out against the Lakers with a LeBron James in pre-2010 Cleveland mode. 38 points, 5 rebounds, 6 assists for the King, an MVP performance but an insufficient performance, the reigning champions being too limited without Anthony Davis, Kyle Kuzma or Marc Gasol, all absent this night. A great contrast to the team opposite, which has managed to build on the strength of its collective and several important contributions. Chris Paul did not put a basket (well yes, a …) but was as usual extremely clean (10 caviars for a small turnover), Deandre Ayton (17 points, 5 rebounds), Jae Crowder (15 points) and Mikal Bridges (19 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists) did a hell of a job together, the duo Abdel Nader – Cam Johnson brought their award-winning shots off the bench (17 points to 5/7 away in combined), and a Dario Saric in luxury sixth man mode turned into the hero of the game squarely, finishing Phoenix’s top scorer with 21 points overall and valuable in the final quarter. It was too much for the Lakers despite the efforts of Talen Horton-Tucker (16 points off the bench) and the 17 points of Dennis Schroder. With this new loss, the sixth in the last nine games, the defending champions continue to struggle without AD and they can thank their neighbors the Clippers for their loss in Boston, as it allows the Frank Vogel gang to remain on the podium. from West.
Devin Booker gets ejected after bouncing the ball at a ref 👀 pic.twitter.com/kEj0hoMRNz
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) March 3, 2021
Speaking of the podium, Phoenix has now taken the place of dolphin behind the Jazz and ahead of the two Los Angeles franchises. Yes, this sentence is very real, the Suns not only have two All-Stars but they are also second in the West. A few months ago it all seemed unlikely and it shows once again how fast things are going in the most beautiful league in the world. Authors of an attractive start to the season but in difficulty in January (seven defeats in ten games), Chris Paul and his friends have been on a cloud for a month and have won a series of wins in the boss costume: 18 games, 15 successes, the Suns haven’t left many games on the way and it’s not like Monty Williams’ men have only faced noobs. Take a look at their calendar, there are some big teams on the hunting board. All that to say that the Suns are for real, and that they will have to be really counted on when the real fun begins in the Wild Wild West.
Even if the Lakers were not complete, even if the defending champions are now in the rough, it remains a quality victory for the Suns, especially with a Devin Booker playing only 24 minutes. Next step for Phoenix? A game against Golden State before the All-Star Break, where the Arizona men will be keen to solidify their second place in the West.
The box score is here.