The NBA All-Star break serves as a signal that we are halfway through the season. For the Golden State Warriors and their fans, the season couldn't end soon enough. Aside from pushing harder than expected to eke out wins the past few weeks, the Suns just handed them another L going in to the break.
According to Phoenix Suns head coach Monty Williams, he did not expect Deandre Ayton, who was questionable with an ankle sprain, to play against Golden State, and the team's other three bigs have not been re-evaluated since the team's last official announcement on Jan. 25.
Devin Booker stressed that late February and March are when playoff teams start to separate in the standings and that he expects the Suns to be one of the teams to make a run.
This season has pushed Warriors head coach Steve Kerr room to tinker, which is why he made rookie Jordan Poole - a catch-and-shoot gunner who had never initiated an NBA offense - his starting point guard Wednesday night.
Booker's 27 points aided the Phoenix Suns to defer the visiting Golden State Warriors, 112-106, Wednesday night in the final game before the NBA All-Star break.
He was used in a ton of off-ball action in the halfcourt to spread the defense, daring Golden State's young defense to rotate and contain him.
Kelly Oubre Jr. pitched in 15 points and Mikal Bridges added 14 for the Suns, who had lost six of their previous seven games.
Booker called this game "trap game" at shootaround for both teams and said it would be a test of whose pre-break malaise affected them more. This marked Golden State's fourth consecutive loss and the first time Phoenix has taken the season series over the Warriors since 2011.
The Suns shot nearly 38 percent from 3-point range in a game that they led most of the evening. Phoenix made a clean sweep for the second time in eight games and goes into the All-Star break with a 22-33 record. The Suns have already triumphed last season's total of 19 wins, succeeding with 87-76 after three quarters and never trailed in the fourth.
The Warriors managed to turn the ball over a total of 22 times, this was crucial in their loss as the game was close, however, allowing 30 or more points off of turnovers makes it difficult to walk away with a win.
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Damian Lillard was subjected to a groin injury in Portland's 111-104 loss at Memphis. The five-time all-star said he will not play in Sunday's all-star game in Chicago and suggested Booker as his replacement.
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