Suns Youth Show Maturity and Growth in Battle with Clippers

by Cody Cunningham

The development of the Phoenix Suns roster continued to shine through the maturity and growth of their play against an elite Western Conference opponent on Thursday night.

Many forget Devin Booker is only 20-years-old as he is beginning to play with veteran-like tendencies on the court. Maybe a 70-point game will do that to you.

Booker knocked down a huge three-pointer with under eleven minutes remaining to give himself his 12th 30-point outing of the season. He was getting hot and many would expect a heat-check type of shot coming up. Instead, a fast-break on the next possession, Booker pulled up at the top of the key and found an open Derrick Jones Jr. in the paint for the score. This tied the game at 97-97.

“We call that good to great,” Head Coach Earl Watson said. “Pass up a good shot for a great shot.”

Devin Booker Scores 33 Against Clippers

Booker had 33 points and a season-high-tying nine assists before fouling out near the end of the fourth quarter. The Suns could not overcome losing the young shooting guard, as they fell to the Clippers 124-118.

“We’re fighting out there,” Booker said. “We’re young in this league; we’re trying to make a name for ourselves. I think it was a really good test for us that we fought the whole game, but came up short in the end.”

Booker is not the only player showing improvement on the court.

Double-doubles seem to be coming from all over the Suns roster. T.J. Warren notched his fifth career double-double (fourth in the last 11 games) with 14 points and 10 rebounds.

T.J. Warren Double-Double vs Clippers

Tyler Ulis joined Warren for his fifth double-double in the last nine games with 16 points and 13 assists. He currently has more point-assist double-doubles than all other NBA rookies combined.

“I think players are growing in all areas,” Watson said. “They’re getting the opportunity and we all know opportunity at this level is the most important for growth and development and just improving. They’re so young and still believe that anything is possible. What you see now is their belief is starting to grow into different areas of the game.”

The Suns hit the road for a one game trip against Portland Trail Blazers on Saturday. Catch the action on FOX Sports Arizona.

Tyler Ulis Double-Double vs Clippers