Booker Scorches The DeMarcus Cousins Administration With Bank Shot, Suns Nail 105-103 Victory

THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Sacramento, Calif. – The way Phoenix Suns shooting guard Devin Booker started off in the third quarter against the Sacramento Kings at Golden 1 Center should have been every indication that he was going to be the go-to guy in the fourth quarter.

With the score tied 103-103, Booker made a 20-foot, fade-away bank shot off the glass at the buzzer to give Phoenix (16-34, 8-18 road, 1-1 neutral) a decisive 105-103 win against the Kings. Booker finished with 33 points, two rebounds, two assists, two steals and four-made 3-point shots for the Suns, who ended a five-game losing streak.

After both teams were tied 49-49 break, Booker burst opened the third quarter as if he had the spirit of Supernova. He was sizzling. Booker scored 15 of the Suns’ first 19 points to start the second half when he only had seven points in the first half.

“I knew I wasn't going to get a clean look," Booker said. "I just wanted to pick a spot, get there, and know where I'm shooting. I took the look I got.”

The money shot to win it all was while Kings forward Matt Barnes was on the cover. Barnes defended Booker well on the play to no avail.

“Yeah, guy took a contested 20 footer. I don’t know how (he made it), Kings coach Dave Joerger said of Bookers’ buzzer-beating shot. “Somebody’s going to get it. Somebody going to get a shot. He hei a shot on a 6-foot-8 guy and only he’ll tell if he went off the glass or not on purpose.”

Sacramento Kings point guard Ty Lawson, No. 10, looks to dribble past TJ Warren and Tyson Chandler of the Phoenix Suns. Publicity Agents photo art by T. Ray Harvey. Feb. 3, 2017.

DeMarcus Cousins recorded a triple-double with 22 points, 12 assists, and 12 rebounds for the Kings (19-31, overall, 8-14 G1C), who played at home after a grueling eight-game road trip that produced three-quality victories. Darren Collison had 19 points in the loss.

It didn’t help that Arron Afflalo was out with the flu and Garrett Temple is sidelined with a hamstring injury. Ben McLemore started and scored 19 points. McLemore did give his team a needed boost with 16 points in the first half.

TJ Warren had 21 points and five rebounds and Eric Bledsoe finished with 20 points, six rebounds, and four assists for the Suns. Brandon Knight scored all of his 12 points in the second quarter and every basket was a big plus for Phoenix.

Before Booker ended the contest, PJ Booker broke free to make a 24-foot 3-point shot to give the Suns a 103-101 lead with 21.6 seconds left to play. Collison tied the game with a 15-foot floater with 8.2 seconds remaining, and then Booker delivered the death blow.

“We’re excited, we’re happy, and it was a big win for us,” Phoenix head coach Earl Watson said. “We needed a win like that. Our guys have been on the road so long mentally and physically being fatigue. We found a way to regenerate the group.”

Devin Booker and his Phoenix Suns teammates celebrate his shot that beat the Kings. Publicity Agents photo art by T. Ray Harvey. Feb. 3, 2017.

For the Kings, it was a crushing blow for a team that don’t get blown out of games, but struggle to win down the stretch, especially, at home. Dating back to the Kings last home stand where they won 1 out 7 contest, Sacramento have dropped the last four at G1C and is currently on a three-game losing streak.

To make matters worse, the Golden State Warriors are in Sacramento on Feb. 4. The Ws have not played since thumping the Los Angeles Clippers 133-120 for a road win on Feb. 2. The Kings do have five games left on this homestand.

We put ourselves in a position - a great position to win this game - and just didn’t come through with it,” Cousins said.

By T. Ray Harvey | PA Public Information Officer and Photographic Artist

Twitter: Tony Ray Harvey @PublicityAgents

Publicity Agents’ PRESS INFORMATION:

  • The Sacramento Kings were without Arron Afflalo (flu), Omri Casspi (right plantaris tendon strain), and Garrett Temple. Afflalo is day-to-day, Casspi has missed his last nine games and Temple is expected to miss three to four weeks with a hamstring injury he suffered on the Kings last game on an eight-game road trip.

  • The Kings kickoff their Black History Month with a variety of activities. The team recognized Collis Temple (father of Kings guard Garrett Temple) during a special in-game presentation. Collis broke barriers as the first African-American basketball team member at Louisiana State.

DEMARCUS COUSINS TO SHOW OFF HIS SKILLS, AGAIN, DURING ALL-STAR WEEKEND

Sacramento Kings forward/center DeMarcus Cousins will participate in the Taco Bell® Skills Challenge as part of State Farm® All-Star Saturday Night on Feb. 18 in New Orleans, the National Basketball Association announced this week.

A dual participant after being named a Western Conference All-Star reserve last week, Cousins will join Anthony Davis (New Orleans Pelicans), Gordon Hayward (Utah Jazz), Isaiah Thomas (Boston Celtics), John Wall (Washington Wizards), Devin Booker (Phoenix Suns), Joel Embiid (Philadelphia 76ers) and Kristaps Porzingis (New York Knicks) in the eight-player field.

With Cousins, Davis, Embiid and Porzingis competing, this marks the second straight year that four big men will be showing off their versatility in the traditionally guard-heavy event.

The three-round, obstacle-course competition, which tests dribbling, passing, agility and three-point-shooting skills, will feature a head-to-head, bracket-style tournament format. The four big men will be on one side of the bracket and the remaining four players will be on the other side of the bracket.

Last season in Toronto, Cousins defeated fellow Kentucky alum Davis in round one and was edged out by another Wildcat and eventual competition champion Karl Anthony Towns in the semifinals.

T. Ray (Antonio) Harvey is a Public Information Officer and Photographic Artist for Publicity Agents. Harvey is also the author of The HOMICIDAL HANDYMAN OF OAK PARK: MORRIS SOLOMON JR.

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