Headband Booker Drops 30 Points as Suns Fall to Raptors at Buzzer
The Phoenix Suns continued their four-game road trip as they traveled up north to take on the Toronto Raptors on Thursday night.
Devin Booker and Deandre Ayton led the way for the Suns in the first scoring 15 of their 20 points, but the Raptors took a double-digit lead after the first quarter and it looked like the Suns could be in for a long night.
Kelly Oubre Jr. played a large role in the second quarter, scoring eight point as he helped keep the game within reach. Booker had a game-high 15 points at halftime, but the Suns still trailed 57-49.
The Suns struck first to open up the third quarter as Booker went to the free throw line and knocked down both shots. He then followed this up with a three-pointer and just like that it was only a one-possession game with almost an entire half to play.
A Mikal Bridges three tied the game with under six minutes left in the quarter, but it would take until there was a minute and a half to go for Richaun Holmes to knock down a free throw and give the Suns their first lead since the first quarter.
They maintained the lead to close out the third as they went into the final frame up by one.
Oubre extended the Suns lead to begin the fourth, hitting two shots at the free throw line as the Suns momentum began to grow. The game became a back-and-forth battle as neither team could quite pull away and the Suns trailed by just one with a little over two minutes to go.
Although Booker may have a new look with the headband, he still held the same clutch gene he always had. The young star launched from deep and knocked down a three to put the Suns up by two.
Unfortunately for the Suns, the Raptors would get the next two scores as two Pascal Siakam free throws followed by a Serge Ibaka make would put the lead back in the Raptors favor with 30 seconds remaining.
But the Suns weren’t done yet. Kyle Lowry missed a game-clinching three as Mikal Bridges was fouled by Ibaka as he chased down the rebound.
There was only 13 seconds to go in a two-point game as the Suns rookie stepped up to the line in one of the biggest moments thus far in his NBA career.
The pressure didn’t stand too big for the two-time National Champion as Bridges knocked down both shots at the free throw lane and tied the game at 109.
The Raptors gave the ball to Siakam for the final play as the third-year-pro drove to the lane, laid it up with his left hand and dropped in the game-winning shot off the glass. The Raptors won at the buzzer 111-109.
Headband Booker had quite a night up north scoring a game-high 30 points to go along with his eight assists and two rebounds.
Ayton notched his rookie-leading 27th double-double with 15 points and 17 rebounds while also adding two steals and two blocks on 75 percent shooting.
Oubre led the second unit scoring 18 points, including 11 free throws and also grabbing nine rebounds.
The Suns continue their road trip on Saturday as they travel to Charlotte to face the Hornets. Be sure to catch the action on Fox Sports Arizona.