Welcome to a Tuesday recap of ‘Cats in the NBA action, let’s get to it.
The only Wildcat who played last night was Devin Booker. A few days after lighting up LeBron’s Lakers for 47 and a series-clinching victory, D-Book and the Suns handily defeated the Nuggets in Game 1 of the West Conference Semifinals.
Denver withstood Jamal Murray’s absence in the Portland series, but against a much better defensive team, they’re going to miss their other primary scorer/creator. Last night the Nuggets scored just 105 points, low for an NBA game, while Booker and Chris Paul led the Suns with 21 points apiece.
Booker only needed 12 shots to get 21, and he made 8 of those plus 4 free throws to get there. He also dished out 8 assists and corralled 4 rebounds but turned the ball over 5 times. His running mate CP3 had his best game of the postseason with 21 points and 11 assists on a right shoulder that seems to be improving.
The game was well-contested until the final quarter of the game. Phoenix led for most of the first three quarters but Denver stayed neck-and-neck. An 11-0 run spanning the final minutes of the third and the beginning of the fourth put Phoenix up 13 with about 10 minutes to play and the Suns never let the lead get under 10.
Phoenix was expected to win the series before it started, and after one game they look like the superior side. Murray’s injury is tragic but Devin Booker may be to benefit; his Suns now have a fairly unproblematic path to the Conference Finals. Plus, Chris Paul is looking healthier by the day and could earn some necessary extra rest if Phoenix takes care of Denver in four or five games.
TODAY IN THE NBA
7:30: Hawks @ 76ers (Maxey) | Atlanta leads series 1-0
10:00: Clippers (Rondo, Cousins, Patterson) @ Jazz | Series tied 0-0