PHOENIX SUNS

LeBron James says Suns’ Devin Booker is a future All-Star

Aug 17, 2016, 4:29 PM | Updated: 4:49 pm
(Composite/Associated Press)...
(Composite/Associated Press)
(Composite/Associated Press)

Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker has already earned the praise of star shooting guards Kobe Bryant, Jimmy Butler and Dwyane Wade.

On Wednesday while on Uninterrupted’s Open Run podcast (check the 1:22.00 mark), the Cleveland Cavaliers’ LeBron James became the latest to give Booker an endorsement.

And it was a pretty bold one, too.

The reigning NBA Finals MVP threw Booker’s name out when he was asked to choose a “promising young gun” that was under the radar.

“That no one knows about?” James asked. “I’ma be honest. If it’s someone that is under the radar right now that … I believe that’s gonna be a really, really, really All-Star (level) player in the league, it’s Devin Booker from the Phoenix Suns.”

Now, it’s up to Booker to prove he can handle the pressure and improve upon a First Team All-Rookie season that was more impressive to the naked eye than it was in the box score.

As a rookie, Booker averaged 13.6 points, 2.6 assists and 2.5 rebounds per game. He grew into Phoenix’s biggest offensive role and shot 42 percent overall and 34 percent from three-point range after beginning the year primarily as a spot-up shooter.

Playing alongside or behind Eric Bledsoe and Brandon Knight before injuries hit them, Booker was shooting 45 percent from the field and 40 percent from three.

Nothing about those statistics screams future All-Star, but there are a few records for the Suns and NBA-wide that might hint to Booker’s potential for greatness.

Only three players have reached the 1,000-point career scoring mark at a younger age than Booker. Kevin Durant is one. Bryant and James are the others.

And because Booker has yet to turn 20 years old, he has a good amount of time to reach the growing expectations coming from his most respected peers.

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