Chris Paul comes out draining 3s in Phoenix Suns’ win over Warriors

Oct 25, 2022, 8:49 PM | Updated: 11:39 pm

Phoenix Suns guard Chris Paul was a perfect 3-for-3 from deep in the first half in Tuesday night’s 134-105 win over the Golden State Warriors at Footprint Center.

The last of the three-pointers in the opening 24 minutes came at the buzzer in the second quarter to give the Suns a 72-66 halftime lead.

“I shot eight (threes) last game,” Paul joked of head coach Monty Williams saying pregame he wanted the point guard to shoot more. “When you got so many weapons on our team, a lot of times you facilitate. I’m going to shoot, I promise I’m going to shoot. … It’s always good see them go in but more so just the spirit of our team playing the right way and getting a win.”

Paul finished the night with 16 points on 5 of 10 shooting and 4-for-5 from three to go along with nine assists, seven rebounds and one steal in 35 minutes played.

“I think it’s something we all sorta talked about going into the season, we wanted to be just harder to guard,” Paul said. “A lot of teams last year in the playoffs were trying to pick me up fullcourt with me being the primary ballhandler. It’s fine. I can actually shoot.

“Majority of my career, I’ve always been the playmaker, so it’s nice to get a few catch-and-shoots. It’s something I have to get used to because I’m usually always creating for other guys. But it’s been nice to get some catch-and-shoots.”

This season has seen a little bit of a different role for the 37-year-old.

Instead of his usual point guard duties, he’s been used in more of an off-ball role, which has opened up the Point God for more catch-and-shoot opportunities.

“We just think Chris is turning down too many shots,” Williams said pregame. “Everybody is on Chris about shooting. He’s probably sick of everybody telling him, but we just want him to quickly shoot it. He thinks the right play is getting somebody else a shot in a catch-shot role because we have good shooters.

“Getting him off the ball is something that he’s wanted for a couple of years now. We’ve put a lot of pressure on Chris to have the ball for most of the possession. We’re trying to grow when he’s off the ball so he can play in go-catch environments. But the first thing is just take the shot because he’s such a good shooter.”

Paul came into the contest 1-for-11 from beyond the arc in the team’s first three games.

He was also 1-for-8 (12.5%) from three in the Suns’ 112-95 win over the Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday.

“A lot of it is theory right now,” Williams said. “We don’t have enough examples to make the case that it’s real but we hope he can when we have other guys that can facilitate and get us into offense in a timely fashion.

“That’s the other side of the coin. We can talk about other guys facilitating, but can we get it down the floor in a timely fashion with pressure and then get it where we need to get the ball then find Chris and (Devin Booker) on the backside — that’s easier said than done.”

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