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Booker scores 38 points; The Suns beat the Thunder

Devin Booker joined a very special club on Wednesday.

The Suns point guard scored 38 points, exceeding 10,000 for life, and Phoenix overwhelmed the Oklahoma City Thunder 115-97, to cut a two-game losing streak and share the top of the NBA.

At 25 years and 60 days, Booker is the seventh youngest player in history to pass 10,000 units in the NBA. The others are LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant, Carmelo Anthony, Tracy McGrady, and Giannis Antetokounmpo.

“This means a lot,” Booker said. “I am truly grateful to be in this position. I acknowledge the work of my coaches for trusting a young man and allowing him to make mistakes, because not everyone receives this opportunity ”.

The Suns bounced back from home losses to Golden State and Memphis. They caught up with the Warriors for No. 1 in the league, going 27-7.

Booker made 12 of 24 shots from the field. He made six of 12 triples.

JaVale McGee and Cameron Payne had 16 points per head. McGee also had eight rebounds, while Payne led Phoenix in assists with seven.

Cam Johnson finished with 12 points, while Jalen Smith posted 11 and set a career-best 14 rebounds.

Both teams lacked key players and their coaches.

Suns starters Deandre Ayton and Jae Crowder as well as strategist Monty Williams missed their second straight game.

The Thunder played without point guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander with a sore right ankle. Also starters Jeremiah Robinson-Earl and Josh Giddey were already on the coronavirus protocol, and coach Mark Daigneault missed his second game in a row.

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Oklahoma City trailed by 10 points after the first period, but recovered and took the lead in the final quarter. The Suns outscored the Thunder 30-16 in the fourth quarter, in which Booker set the tone with nine tallies.

“We kind of knew it was going to be like this against a hungry team, with guys who were excited to have a chance,” said Kevin Young, who replaced Williams as coach. “What we love about Book is that he’s a fierce competitor and he’s not afraid of anything.”

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