PHOENIX SUNS

Suns rally after scuffle, Pelicans pull away late for critical win

Apr 7, 2024, 5:35 PM | Updated: 5:39 pm

Devin Booker...

Devin Booker #1 of the Phoenix Suns dribbles around pressure from Larry Nance Jr. #22 and Jose Alvarado #15 of the New Orleans Pelicans during the first half at Footprint Center on April 07, 2024 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Chris Coduto/Getty Images)

(Photo by Chris Coduto/Getty Images)

The Phoenix Suns erased a 10-point fourth quarter deficit after a scuffle with the Pelicans, but New Orleans pulled away late to avoid the season series sweep, 113-105.

The kerfuffle broke out late in the third quarter after a Devin Booker offensive foul for running into Zion Williamson. Dyson Daniels gave Booker a slight push, and Booker pushed back. The two exchanged words while Jose Alvarado got in Booker’s face until he was pulled away by Drew Eubanks.

Booker, Daniels and Alvarado were all assessed technical fouls.

The two sides have history from their playoff series in 2020-21 and Williamson’s 360 dunk at the end of a game in 2022-23. They are also in a battle to avoid the play-in tournament in the Western Conference playoff picture, and New Orleans’ win gave each team 46-32 records.

Alvarado hit a triple to start the scoring in the fourth quarter and take a 93-83 lead, but Bradley Beal came back with eight straight points.

Beal gave the Suns the lead back 96-95 on a triple after center Jusuf Nurkic picked C.J. McCollum’s pocket and spun a dime pass to Beal in transition.

Beal finished with a game-high 33 points on 13-on-19 shooting.

Talking continued after Booker scored an and-1 layup over Trey Murphy III.

The Pelicans, though, kept the pressure on with a 6-0 run after losing the lead, and Williamson was a force down the stretch.

Williamson finished with 31 points, 14 in the fourth quarter. He was questionable to play coming in with a finger contusion.

The Suns led by 13 in the first half, but the Pelicans outscored Phoenix 37-24 in the second quarter to take a 56-50 advantage into halftime. The Pelicans hit 11 triples in the opening 24 minutes, five from McCollum, who scored 24 points by the break and finished with 31.

Phoenix hosts the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday.

Phoenix Suns

LeBron James looks on...

Dan Bickley

LeBron James could be last grand slam for this version of Suns

For a desperate team with very little wiggle room like the Phoenix Suns, LeBron James might be the last grand slam available.

30 minutes ago

...

Arizona Sports Video

Video: Bickley Blast: LeBron James may no longer be the face of the NBA but still dominates the offseason

LeBron James may no longer be the face the NBA but Dan Bickley explains how the superstar still continues to dominate on the court and the offseason news cycle.

7 hours ago

Bronny James, USC Trojans guard...

Kevin Zimmerman

ESPN: Bronny James stays in NBA Draft, agent determining which interested teams are ‘real’

Bronny James will remain in the NBA Draft, and agent Rich Paul told ESPN he is vetting which teams are serious about drafting the guard.

8 hours ago

Suns assistant coach David Fizdale next to head coach Frank Vogel...

Arizona Sports

David Fizdale reportedly will be retained as assistant under Suns head coach Mike Budenholzer

Phoenix Suns head coach Mike Budenholzer's coaching staff will reportedly include long-time NBA coach David Fizdale.

10 hours ago

Karl-Anthony Towns...

Associated Press

Timberwolves hold off Mavericks to avoid sweep in Western Conference finals

Karl-Anthony Towns scored 20 of his 25 points in the second half and the Minnesota Timberwolves held off the Dallas Mavericks.

20 hours ago

LeBron James and Bronny James...

Haboob Blog

Somebody who owns LeBron.com is teasing LeBron James to the Suns

Someone is toying with the emotions of fans considering the possibility of the Phoenix Suns drafting Bronny James and signing LeBron.

1 day ago

Suns rally after scuffle, Pelicans pull away late for critical win