The Phoenix Suns beat the New Orleans Pelicans Thursday in Game 6 of their Western Conference first-round NBA Playoffs series to advance to the Western Conference semifinals. Look back at our updates from the game.
The Suns closed out the New Orleans Pelicans in Game 6 of their NBA Playoffs series with a 115-109 win on Thursday night in New Orleans.
The Suns will next face the Dallas Mavericks in the Western Conference semifinals Game 1 on Monday night in Phoenix.
Suns point guard Chris Paul scored 33 points for the Suns on 14-for-14 shooting to lead the Suns to the win.
Deandre Ayton had 22 points on 10-for 12 shooting.
Devin Booker had 13 points in his return to the Suns lineup, including a clutch three late.
Brandon Ingram led the Pelicans with 21 points.
Phoenix outscored New Orleans 34-27 in the third quarter and 33-24 in the fourth quarter after being down by 10 points at the half.
score: Suns 115, Pelicans 109 (final)
Suns grab lead late in game vs. Pelicans
Devin Booker hit a huge three and Mikal Bridges followed it with a steal and dunk to give the Suns a 108-104 lead with just over a minute left in the game.
score: Suns 108, Pelicans 104 (1:28 remaining in fourth quarter)
Defensive battle late in Suns vs. Pelicans game
Remember when the Pelicans led the game 100-99 with 6:05 remaining?
Well, the Suns now lead the game 101-100 with 2:35 remaining.
Neither team has been able to get anything going offensively late in the fourth quarter.
score: Suns 101, Pelicans 100 (2:35 left in fourth quarter)
The Suns have been so good all season late in games. They’ll need to be good to beat the Pelicans in Game 6 in New Orleans.
The Pelicans lead the Suns 100-99, with 6:05 remaining.
Chris Paul has 27 points for the Suns on 12-for-12 shooting. Deandre Ayton has 20 and Mikal Bridges has 16.
Brandon Ingram has 17 for New Orleans, while Herbert Jones and CJ McCollum each have 16.
Phoenix is 12-for-12 from the free throw line. New Orleans is 14-for-15. You have a feeling that this game could come down to who gets to the foul line and who converts their foul shot attempts.
score: Pelicans 100, Suns 99 (6:05 left in fourth quarter)
The Suns outscored the Pelicans in the third quarter, 34-27 and trail New Orleans heading into the fourth, 85-82.
The Pelicans are seeking to force a Game 7 against the Suns. The Suns are seeking to end the series.
New Orleans has a 32-20 rebounding edge in the game.
score: Pelicans 85, Suns 82 (end of third quarter)
Fouls adding up in Game 6
Suns coach Monty Williams successfully challenged a foul call on Jae Crowder, which would have been his fourth, but it was changed to an offensive foul on Jose Alvarado.
The Pelicans have been called for six offensive fouls in the game.
The Suns have 14 fouls in the game. The Pelicans have 19.
Phoenix is 11-for-11 from the free throw line. New Orleans is 11-for-11.
Crowder later picked up his fourth foul. Herbert Jones has four fouls for New Orleans and CJ McCollum has five.
score: Pelicans 79, Suns 77 (2:25 left in third quarter)
The Suns have outscored the Pelicans in the third quarter, 22-11 to take a 70-69 lead.
The Pelicans’ CJ McCollum has five fouls in the game for New Orleans. He leads New Orleans with 16 points.
Chris Paul has exploded for Phoenix. He has 13 points in the quarter and 23 points in the game.
He is 10-for-10 from the field.
Phoenix is now 27-for-46 from the field and 5-for-12 from 3 in the game.
score: Suns 70, Pelicans 69 (6:09 left in third quarter)
Key to the second half for Suns vs. Pelicans
The Suns have been outrebounded 26-14 in the game and that is with Pelicans big man Jonas Valanciunas only playing 11 minutes with three fouls.
New Orleans had 14 second chance points in the first half. The Suns had zero. Yes, zero.
The Pelicans had nine offensive rebounds and the Suns had one.
Obviously, those numbers are going to have to change for the Suns to have a chance to get back into this game in the second half.
Cameron Johnson interestingly started the second half for the Suns, not Devin Booker.
TNT’s Reggie Miller said that it was because Suns coach Monty Williams wants to manage Booker’s minutes so that he can close the game.
If the Suns are going to close out the Pelicans in Game 6 of their series, they are going to have a solid second half.
The Pelicans have a 58-48 lead over the Suns at the half after outscoring Phoenix 30-20 in the second quarter.
The Suns played a lot of the quarter without Devin Booker and Chris Paul, who sat at the scorer’s table the last couple minutes of the half but never got a break in action to check into the game.
Deandre Ayton has 12 points to lead Phoenix. Chris Paul has 10. Neither has missed a shot.
Devin Booker is 1-for-4 from the field for two points in his return to the Suns’ lineup.
Phoenix is 17-for-35 from the field and 4-for-1 from 3 and 10-for-10 from the free throw line.
CJ McCollum has 13 points for the Pelicans. Brandon Ingram has 12.
New Orleans is 23-for-47 from the field and 3-for-12 from 3 and 9-for-9 from the free throw line.
The Pelicans have a 26-14 edge in rebounds, an area it has dominated the Suns in this postseason.
The Pelicans outscored the Suns in the second quarter, 30-20.
score: Pelicans 58, Suns 48 (halftime)
Deandre Ayton has 12 points for the Suns in the game. He is 5-for-5 from the field and 2-for-2 from the free throw line.
The Suns, however, have fallen behind the Pelicans, 50-40, with three minutes remaining in the first half.
New Orleans has outscored Phoenix in the second quarter, 22-12.
The Pelicans are on a 9-0 run.
score: Pelicans 50, Suns 40 (3:00 left in first half)
Ugly start to second quarter of Game 6
The officials have called a lot of fouls early in the second quarter and the game has slowed down because of it.
Phoenix has been whistled for seven fouls in the game. New Orleans has been called for nine fouls.
The Suns are 7-for-7 from the line. The Pelicans are 2-for-2.
The Suns have a 6-5 scoring edge in the quarter.
score: Suns 34, Pelicans 33 (7:23 left in second quarter)
The Suns and Pelicans are tied, 28-28 after the first quarter of Game 6 in New Orleans.
Deandre Ayton leads the Suns with 10 points on 4-for-4 shooting.
CJ McCollum has seven points to lead the Pelicans.
The Suns are 10-for-17 from the field and 2-for-6 from 3. Perhaps more important, they are 6-for-6 from the free throw line while New Orleans is 2-for-2.
The Pelicans are 12-for-25 from the field and 2-for-9 from the 3-point line.
New Orleans has a 10-8 edge in rebounds, but a 3-0 lead in offensive rebounds.
score: Suns 28, Pelicans 28 (end of first quarter)
Pelicans’ CJ McCollum fouls Suns’ Cameron Johnson hard
The Pelicans’ CJ McCollum fouled the Suns’ Cameron Johnson hard on a fast break for the Suns and the Phoenix was not happy about it at all.
Johnson’s head appeared to hit the court after the contact.
McCollum was called for a flagrant foul 1 on the play.
score: Pelicans 25, Suns 22 (1:44 left in first quarter)
The Suns are off to a hot shooting start against the Pelicans in Game 6.
Phoenix has hit 7-of-10 from the field in the early going. The Pelicans have hit 4-of-14 shots.
Deandre Ayton leads the Suns with eight points (he is 3-for-3 from the field). Jaxson Hayes has six to lead the Pelicans.
Both teams are 1-for-4 from 3-point range.
Devin Booker does have a basket for Phoenix in his return from a hamstring injury.
score: Suns 17, Pelicans 15 (4:54 left in first quarter)
The Suns are going with the same starting lineup they went with in Games 1 and 2.
Devin Booker returns from his hamstring injury, sending Cam Johnson back to the bench.
Chris Paul, Jae Crowder, Mikal Bridges and Deandre Ayton are the rest of Phoenix’s starters.
The Pelicans are going with their same starting lineup from the first fives games of the series: Brandon Ingram and Jaxson Hayes at forward, Jonas Valanciunas at center and Herbert Jones and CJ McCollum at guard.
Here’s what we will be watching in Game 6 of the Suns vs. Pelicans game on Thursday night.
How effective will Devin Booker be?
He’s been out with a hamstring strain since Game 2. How much will he play in Game 6? How effective will he be? How much of an emotional lift will just being on the court give the Suns?
Which Chris Paul will we see?
Chris Paul has looked really good at times in this series. At other times, he has looked like he is almost 37 years old (which he almost is). If he can look as good as he looked in the Suns’ wins, or even close to it, you have to like Phoenix’s chances to close out the series.
What will be the free throw disparity?
The Pelicans had a 42-15 free-throw edge in Game 4 in New Orleans, a game they won. What will the free throw disparity look like in Game 6? The Suns can’t afford to be too far behind in free throws and they can’t afford to have players in foul trouble, like Cam Payne and Jae Crowder were in for much of Game 5 at home.
Can the Suns keep the Pelicans off the offensive glass?
Rebounding in Game 6 will be a key to the game. The Suns can’t afford to let the Pelicans dominate on the offensive glass as they have at times in this series. Will Deandre Ayton and JaVale McGee be able to keep Jonas Valanciunas and Larry Nance Jr. off the offensive boards?
Can Phoenix take the New Orleans fans out of the game?
The Smoothie King Center has been loud during the team’s games there this series, but Phoenix took the New Orleans crowd out of the game for a lot of Game 3, a Suns win. Game 4 was a different story. Can the Suns quiet the crowd in Game 6?
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the Suns’ Devin Booker, who has been out since Game 2 of the series with a hamstring strain, could be playing in Game 6 on Thursday night.
Later, Suns coach Monty Williams said that Booker would play in Game 6 against the Pelicans.
click here to read more on Devin Booker’s status for the game.
the Suns are a 1.5-point favorite in the game against the Pelicans on Tuesday night, according to Tipico Sportsbook.
Phoenix is -125 on the money line and New Orleans is +102.
The over/under for the game is set at 213.5 points.
click here for picks and predictions for the Suns vs. Pelicans game on Thursday night.
The game will be broadcast on TNT, Bally Sports Arizona and Bally Sports New Orleans beginning at 4:30 pm Arizona time.
click here to see the entire Suns vs. Pelicans NBA Playoffs series schedule.
The Suns are wearing their purple Icon Edition uniform for Game 6, while the Pelicans are wearing their white City Edition uniform.
Suns vs. Pelicans: Game 6 pregame reading
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