January 3, 2018 / 5:10 AM / 5 months ago

4th-quarter surge carries Suns past Hawks

EditorsNote: fixes “free” in lede

Devin Booker scored 34 points, sinking five free throws in the final 12.3 seconds, and the Phoenix Suns scored 11 consecutive points late in the fourth quarter to steal a 104-103 victory over the Atlanta Hawks on Tuesday in Phoenix.

Booker made three free throws for a 102-101 lead when he was fouled on a 3-point attempt from the right wing with 12.3 seconds remaining. Kent Bazemore, who claimed he got all ball, was charged with the foul.

Suns forward Marquese Chriss blocked a dunk attempt by Taurean Prince after a lob pass, and Booker made two more free throws with 6.3 seconds remaining for a three-point lead.

Dennis Schroder’s driving layup with nine-tenths of a second remaining ended the Suns’ 11-0 run, but Phoenix successfully inbounded the ball to end the game.

“All we wanted was a chance, and I made some tough shots,” Booker said. “That last block (by Chriss), I don’t know if anyone else on our team could have made that play. I think we’re turning that corner right now.”

TJ Warren scored 31 points on 15-of-21 shooting, and Chriss had 17 points and 11 rebounds for the Suns (15-24). Phoenix entered the game with a league-worst 6-14 home record.

Center Ersan Ilyasova had 21 points and Schroder and Bazemore added 20 apiece for the Hawks, who have the worst overall record (10-27) and the worst road record (3-16) in the league. Ilysoasova had nine rebounds, just missing his first double-double of the season.

Reserve Mario Belinelli had 16 points for the Hawks, who had 27 points and 13 rebounds from their bench.

Ilyasova’s layup from a Schroder feed gave the Hawks a 97-85 lead with 4:51 remaining, and his free throw made it a 100-91 lead with 1:57 left before the Suns started their comeback.

Booker made two free throws, and Chriss’s 3-pointer trimmed Atlanta’s advantage to 101-96 with 1:29 remaining.

After Atlanta’s Miles Plumlee missed two free throws, Booker hit a 3-pointer from the left wing with 37 seconds left to make it 101-99. Plumleee is a 45.5 percent foul shooter this season.

The Hawks led by as many as 14 points before ultimately falling short.

—Field Level Media

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