Already without Chris Paul, the Phoenix Suns were forced to play part of their thrilling 104-103 Game 2 win against the Los Angeles Clippers without All-Star Devin Booker, who headed to the locker room in the third quarter with blood pouring from the bridge of his nose. The laceration was the result of a head-to-head collision with Clippers guard Patrick Beverley with 3:22 remaining in the third quarter.
Beverley was initially whistled for a foul on the play, and after review the officials determined it did not meet the criteria for a flagrant, and upheld the ruling of a common foul. Booker returned for the start of the fourth quarter after receiving two stitches to his nose. The image was reminiscent of Suns legend Steve Nash, who played through a nasty nose injury in the 2007 Western Conference semifinals against the San Antonio Spurs.
“He was probably playing with a great deal of pain,” Suns coach Monty Williams said of Booker’s injury. “I thought he broke his nose when I saw it. I worried about the blood continuing to flow.”
Fortunately the Suns didn’t have to play without Booker for long, as the young star has been tremendous thus far in his first postseason. Booker struggled offensively for much of Game 3, finishing with 20 points, five assists and seven turnovers on 5-for-16 shooting, but he set a monster pick on Ivica Zubac in the game’s final second to free up Deandre Ayton for the game-winning dunk.
Published: 2021-06-23 05:02:06
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