RECAP: Devin Booker’s 43 points carry Phoenix Suns past Minnesota Timberwolves

By Field Level Media
Feb 28, 2021; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves forward Anthony Edwards (1) dribbles the ball as Phoenix Suns guard Chris Paul (3) plays defense in the first half at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Devin Booker scored a season-high 43 points on 15-of-26 shooting to lead the Phoenix Suns to a 118-99 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Sunday night at Minneapolis.

Deandre Ayton scored 22 points on 9-of-11 shooting and collected 10 rebounds as the Suns won for the 14th time in their past 17 games.

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Dario Saric scored 13 points off the bench and Chris Paul added 11 points and matched his season high of 15 assists for Phoenix.

Anthony Edwards scored 24 points and Karl-Anthony Towns added 21 points and 10 rebounds for Minnesota, which owns an NBA-worst 7-28 record.

Jake Layman tallied 11 points for the Timberwolves, who have lost a season-worst eight straight games as well as 14 of their past 16 games. Minnesota is 0-4 under new coach Chris Finch and has allowed an average of 129.5 points during the span.

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The Timberwolves shot 37.6 percent from the field, including 8 of 35 from 3-point range.

The Suns made 49.4 percent of their shots and were 7 of 27 from behind the arc.

Phoenix held a 61-52 advantage after Ayton’s basket with 9:28 left in the third quarter. But Minnesota answered with an 11-2 spurt and tied the game at 63 on Towns’ 3-pointer with 6:27 to play.

But Booker continued to operate at will and converted a three-point play with 15.1 seconds left and drove the length of the court for a layup with 1.4 seconds remaining to cap a 21-point quarter and give the Suns an 86-76 lead entering the final stanza.

Booker began the fourth quarter on the bench as Phoenix increased its lead. He scored just two points — both on free throws — in 4:17 of final-quarter action.

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Saric knocked down two 3-pointers to start the stanza and Paul added a mid-range jumper and a 3-pointer to push the lead to 97-77 with 10:13 left in the contest.

Ayton later converted a three-point play to make it 111-87 with 3:28 remaining and the Suns closed it out.

Booker scored 20 first-half points as Phoenix led 53-48 at the break.

Edwards had 15 first-half points for the Timberwolves, who took a 34-33 early in the second quarter after an 8-0 burst. The Suns later used a 10-2 run to move ahead 47-40 on Booker’s layup with 2:39 left.

–Field Level Media