PHOENIX SUNS

Jamal Crawford to Suns’ Chris Paul before Game 1 burst: ‘Shoot the ball’

Apr 18, 2022, 9:46 AM | Updated: 12:28 pm

Retired NBA hooper Jamal Crawford and Phoenix Suns point guard Chris Paul go way back.

Despite being a few years off from joining forces in Phoenix, Crawford and Paul were teammates for five seasons with the Los Angeles Clippers (2012-17). Over that time, the duo’s respect for one another grew.

So when the 20-year NBA vet told Paul to put the ball in the basket at halftime of Phoenix’s Game 1 matchup against the New Orleans Pelicans, the point guard listened. Twenty three second-half points later, Paul and the Suns walked away with a 110-99 victory.

“I have been playing for a while, for a long while to tell you the truth,” Paul told reporters after the game. “I think just naturally, you read like if Book got it going or Cam got it going, if DA got it going, or whatever, so over the course of the game, you just try to keep that energy there and if that means I got to score, then so be it.

“Book and them guys stay on me, they talk to me all the time, but Jamal Crawford, fam, one of my teammates, came up to me at halftime and was like, ‘Shoot the ball.’ That’s what he said to me and Book when we were standing over there. So I started shooting.”

It was an impressive 35 minutes of action for Paul on Monday night, with the point guard finishing with 30 points and 10 assists (both game highs) to go along with seven rebounds in the win. He shot 75% from the field (12 of 16) and 66.6% from long range (4 of 6).

The final quarter of play was Paul’s best, however, as he racked up 19 of his 30 points on 7-of-8 shooting to erase any sort of comeback attempt by the Pelicans.

The Suns and Pelicans square off for Game 2 of the first-round playoff matchup Tuesday night at 7 p.m. Tune to 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station for all the action.

Penguin Air

Phoenix Suns

Phoenix Suns guard Aaron Holiday (4) drives between Sacramento Kings guard Josh Jackson (55) and gu...
Kevin Zimmerman

Report: Suns opt against making Aaron Holiday restricted free agent

The Phoenix Suns will not extend a qualifying offer to backup guard Aaron Holiday, giving the team financial relief.
15 hours ago
Dennis Schroder #17 of the Houston Rockets handles the ball against Devin Booker #1 of the Phoenix ...
Kevin Zimmerman

Suns free-agency focus: Will there be a significant upgrade at guard?

The Phoenix Suns could shake up the backcourt to help Chris Paul and Devin Booker manage the load, but how likely is it via free agency?
15 hours ago
Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton (22) looks to pass over Toronto Raptors forward OG Anunoby (3) du...
Kevin Zimmerman

Deandre Ayton free agency market could be cooling with reported Pistons trade

The Detroit Pistons appear to have removed themselves from the Deandre Ayton chase days before free agency officially begins in the NBA.
15 hours ago
Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton takes the court prior to Game 5 of an NBA basketball first-round ...
Wills Rice

Suns’ Ayton becomes 2nd No. 1 pick to hit restricted free agency since 1985

The Suns' Deandre Ayton became the second No. 1 overall pick to hit restricted free agency since the birth of the NBA draft lottery in 1985.
2 days ago
Denver Nuggets assistant coach Patrick Mutombo talks to the team during practice July 8, 2014 at Pe...
Arizona Sports

Raptors G League coach Patrick Mutombo to join Phoenix Suns

Patrick Mutombo is joining the Suns' coaching staff as an assistant. Additionally, Randy Ayers is transitioning to coaching advisor.
2 days ago
Phoenix Suns guard Cameron Payne, left, is hit in the face by Los Angeles Clippers forward Nicolas ...
Kevin Zimmerman

Suns free-agency focus: Wings, modern power forwards of note

The Phoenix Suns have been linked to Nicolas Batum before free agency and Thaddeus Young at past trade deadlines.
2 days ago
Jamal Crawford to Suns’ Chris Paul before Game 1 burst: ‘Shoot the ball’