• ronangaine

Booker leads Suns to O/T win

Devin Booker was the star on Sunday evening as he dropped 35 points to give the Phoenix Suns their 31st victory of the season in Charlotte.

Phoenix came out with the win despite an inspired performance from Devonte Graham, who dropped 30 points, including 7 three pointers.

It was a close battle from start to finish with the teams exchanging leads throughout the first half, going in level at the break but the Suns took the initiative in the third to open up a 14 point lead midway through the quarter.

The Hornets were playing their fourth game without injured rookie, LaMelo Ball, but they had won the three previous games with Devonte Graham taking his chance back in the starting lineup.

The Hornets did their best to stay in touch but were still down heading into the final two minutes of the game and that's when Graham took charge. The guard followed a tough layup with his fifth three pointer of the game to bring the Hornets to within three, 90-87.

With just under 40 seconds to go the ball was back in Graham's hands and he continued his hot form from deep to level the game at 90. After a missed game winner from Phoenix, Graham had the chance to give Charlotte the win at the buzzer but failed to do so & we were headed to over-time.

The teams dropped a bucket each to begin the extra period before Booker & Paul iced the game for Phoenix from the free throw line. After a three from Mikal Bridges, CP3 sunk a pair of free throws to extend the lead to five but the Hornets forced a turnover, giving Graham the chance to cut the deficit back to two and he duly delivered a transition three with 45 seconds remaining.

Devin Booker then took control for Phoenix, driving to the rim and earning a pair of free throws which he converted to stretch the lead back out to four but still the Hornets stayed in touch as Graham answered with a charity stripe pair for himself. 99-97.

With 8 seconds remaining the Suns inbound pass was tipped by Graham but Chris Paul got his hands on the ball before Terry Rozier could and converted a pair of free throws to kill off Charlotte once and for all.

A thrilling Sunday afternoon game in Charlotte and luckily for Phoenix they have two of the most clutch free-throw shooters in the game or it may well have been Devonte Graham's night.