Devin Booker, Suns blow past sinking Pacers

Devin Booker scored 22 of his 35 points in the third quarter and Deandre Ayton had 27 points and 12 rebounds to fuel the visiting Phoenix Suns to a 112-94 victory over the Indiana Pacers on Friday in Indianapolis.

Booker drained a career high-tying six 3-pointers to propel Phoenix to its fifth win in the last six games.

Ayton made 12 of 18 shots and his lone 3-point attempt to fall one point shy of his season-high point total. He scored 28 points in the Suns’ 111-107 overtime win over the Portland Trail Blazers on Dec. 14.

Justin Holiday scored 25 points and Caris LeVert added 20 points and nine assists for the Pacers, who lost three in a row and nine of their last 10 games. Domantas Sabonis recorded 14 points and 14 rebounds in defeat.

Phoenix scored the last eight points of the second quarter to take a 46-38 lead at halftime before bolting out of the blocks to begin the third. Booker made pair of 3-pointers, a long-range jumper and a three-point play within the first 3 1/2 minutes of the quarter to extend the Suns’ advantage to 59-46.

The Pacers turned the tide and Holiday sandwiched 3-pointers around Booker’s converted three-point play to claim a 76-73 lead. Booker countered with a 3-pointer in transition and followed JaVale McGee’s two free throws with a bucket before the buzzer.

Landry Shamet drained a 3-pointer and converted a three-point play as part of the Suns’ 16-2 run to start the fourth quarter. Phoenix wasn’t seriously threatened the rest of the way.

Ayton and Booker combined to score the Suns’ first 19 points before Cameron Payne drained a mid-range jumper and McGee made a dunk to give Phoenix a 23-19 lead at the end of the first quarter.

Indiana rookie Chris Duarte scored seven points in his return from a two-game absence following the birth of his daughter. Teammates Malcolm Brogdon (sore right Achilles) and Jeremy Lamb (sore left knee) did not play in the game, however.


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