A controversial missing just 2.4 seconds of the conclusion allowed Devin Booker to flip the scoreboard with two free throws and consolidate the Phoenix Suns’ narrow victory over the Portland Trail Blazers by 118-117. The loss of the Oregon team opens a silver lining for the Los Angeles Lakers, which maintain mathematical options of avoid the dreaded play-in tournament access to the playoffs.
If the Angelenos win their next two games and the Blazers lose to the Nuggets on Sunday in the final game of the season, the Lakers would be sixth in the standings. If they fail against Indiana or New Orleans, the Angelenos will have to meet in the play-in against the Golden State Warriors or the Memphis Grizzlies; also if Portland beats Denver without depending on what the purple and gold do.
Damian Lillard tried last night with 41 points, 5 rebounds and 5 assists ending the fierce fight for the play-in but he fell short despite shining in the final stretch of the meeting with impossible baskets, those that the announcers adduce to the so-called ‘Give me Time’.
Dame’s time gave way to Booker moment, who was able to trace the shock after a doubtful foul by Norman Powell. Yes indeed, With 4.4 seconds left, Robert Covington missed two free throws on the other side of the court that would have prevented tragedy for the Blazers.
CJ McCollum, author of 27 points and 6 assists, missed the triple winner on the horn and the defeat snapped a five-game winning streak for the visiting team.
Chris Paul led Phoenix with 26 points and 7 assists, while Mikal Bridges added 21 points and 11 rebounds determinants. Booker didn’t have his night although he ended up deciding and that is what matters most at this point: 18 points on a 5-of-17 shooting from the field.
The contribution of Cameron Payne, with 21 points, 6 rebounds and 5 assists off the bench, it was essential in bringing the Suns closer to the Jazz’s top spot. They are one game away and two remain to be played in this exciting end of the course.
Phoenix averted his first three-game losing streak of the season with victory, and is that the team arrived in bad shape after losing three of their last four matches.
Torrey Craig’s 10-point streak in 2 minutes late in the third quarter he allowed the Suns to take an 85-77 lead at the end of the period. The Blazers reacted and leveled things again in a game in which both teams made 16 lead changes in the first half.
The free throws missed by Covington muddied their good game (16-4-4), while Carmelo Anthony if he was overcome and he could only contribute 5 points (1-7 TC; 1-5 3P) in the defeat of his own.
The Phoenix bench beat the visiting bench 31-14, one of the data that ended up paying dearly for some Blazers that still leave the play-in stage open in the Western Conference.