Suns win 4th straight bubble game, top Pacers 114-99
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. Deandre Ayton had 23 points and 10 rebounds, and the Phoenix Suns continued their improbable run in the NBA bubble on Thursday, beating the Indiana Pacers 114-99 for their fourth straight win.
Devin Booker added 20 points and 10 assists and Cameron Johnson had 14 points and 12 rebounds as the Suns pulled away with a 21-0 run that bridged the end of the the third quarter and the start of the fourth.
Malcolm Brogdon had 25 points, six assists and six rebounds to lead the Pacers, who fell to 3-1 in Orlando.
Trailing 75-72 with 2:10 left in the third quarter, Dario Saric scored nine of Phoenix’s 14 points and Cameron Payne added the other five as the Suns finished the quarter on a 14-0 tear. Saric also had four rebounds during the stretch.
The Suns did most of their damage with Booker on the bench with five fouls.
Saric finished with 16 points and eight rebounds, while Payne chipped in with 15 points.
The win pulls the Suns out of the basement in the Western Conference among the teams in Orlando, passing Zion Williamson and the Pelicans. New Orleans lost to the Kings 140-125 earlier in the day.
The Suns started strong, jumping out to a 15-point lead in the first quarter, but it quickly evaporated as it turned into a back-and-forth game until late in the third quarter.
T.J. Warren had 16 points on 7-of-20 shooting for the Pacers.
Warren had been red hot since his arrival in the bubble, scoring 32 points in a 120-109 win over Orlando. His 119 points over three games stand as the most in franchise history for a three-game span.
Pacers: Were outrebound 53-38.
Suns: Booker made more free throws (six) than the entire Pacers team (five) in the first half.
Pacers: Play Lakers on Saturday.
Suns: Play Heat on Saturday.
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