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Pelicans rally previous Suns 125-114 after Booker’s harm | Sports



PHOENIX — Brandon Ingram’s rolling, Devin Booker’s hurting and the New Orleans Pelicans made it clear that this first-round playoff sequence shall be a combat for the top-seeded Phoenix Suns.

Ingram had a improbable all-around sport with 37 factors, 11 rebounds and 9 assists to steer the Pelicans over the Suns 125-114 in Game 2 on Tuesday, pulling off the spectacular street win to tie the sequence at 1-all and earn their first postseason victory since 2018.

As the ultimate buzzer sounded, Pelicans ahead Larry Nance Jr. set the ball down on the courtroom and sprinted off the courtroom into the tunnel along with his teammates. Game 3 is on Friday in New Orleans.

“Good win, let’s go,” Nance mentioned. “Let’s go home.”

Not only did the Suns lose the game, but they’re unsure about the health status of Booker, the All-Star guard who was spectacular in the first half with 31 points before leaving with right hamstring tightness in the third quarter.

The Suns — who led the NBA with a franchise-record 64 wins during the regular season — trailed 77-74 when he departed.

“We’ve got guys that are more than capable of stepping up,” Suns guard Chris Paul mentioned. “Book was killing. He was having a big-time game, but it is what it is.”

Phoenix saved the sport shut with out its main scorer and even took a lead early within the fourth, however the Pelicans rallied, getting massive 3s from Jose Alvarado, CJ McCollum and Ingram to take a bonus they would not relinquish. McCollum completed with 23 factors.

Ingram added robust back-to-back jumpers within the closing minutes to maintain a ultimate Suns rally at bay.

“This is one of his best and it was on a big stage,” Pelicans coach Willie Green mentioned. “I’m proud of that young man. He works his tail off, he’s a great teammate, high character, high IQ and he put it on display tonight.”

Ingram completed 13 of 21 taking pictures from the sphere. The Pelicans shot 17 of 30 (57%) from 3-point vary.

The Suns actually missed Booker within the ultimate quarter, however spotty protection all through the night was an even bigger perpetrator within the loss.

The Pelicans admitted they have been just a little shocked by the depth of their Game 1 loss, particularly throughout the first half once they fell right into a 19-point halftime gap. They did not make the identical mistake on Tuesday, taking a 30-28 lead after one quarter.

The Suns rallied for a 61-56 halftime benefit due to Booker scoring spree. He scored all of his 31 within the first half on 12 of 18 taking pictures, together with 7 of 10 from 3-point vary. He hit a 30-footer simply earlier than the halftime buzzer after the Pelicans inexplicably left him open.

BOOKER’S INJURY

Booker left the sport and went to the locker room late within the third quarter. On the possession earlier than he departed, he jumped to contest a fastbreak shot by New Orleans, but it surely wasn’t instantly clear that he was damage.

He returned at first of the fourth quarter sporting warmups and by no means re-entered the sport. Booker missed a number of video games earlier within the season with a hamstring harm.

BACK-TO-BACK BLOCKS

One of the extra entertaining exchanges of the sport got here within the third quarter when the Suns’ Mikal Bridges and Pelicans’ Jaxson Hayes swapped spectacular blocks on back-to-back possessions.

Bridges struck first, swatting Hayes’ turn-around jumper to begin a Suns fastbreak. Bridges appeared like he may end with a dunk a couple of seconds later however Hayes recovered for his personal block, trapping the ball with two arms towards the backboard.

DA BABY

Booker scored 16 factors within the first quarter on 6 of 10 taking pictures and his ultimate bucket was a heartwarmer.

The guard hit a tricky nook jumper simply earlier than the buzzer and fell to the ground subsequent to the gang. Booker appeared up and there was a child within the lap of a person proper subsequent to him, so he gave the child a fist bump earlier than operating again to the huddle.

TIP-INS

Pelicans: McCollum practically had a triple-double, including 9 assists and eight rebounds.

Suns: Chris Paul completed with 17 factors and 14 assists however shot simply 5 of 16 from the sphere.

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