Not even the ridiculous expulsion of Booker stops the Suns: victory against the Lakers despite a good LeBron

The Lakers fell at home to the Suns, who threaten the entire Western Conference. Williams' men won despite the expulsion of Devin Booker.


The Suns are scary. It is a fact, beyond any doubt. Unless they fall in the second part of the regular phase, they are candidates for a real leap this season. The Lakers, the current champions, have been beaten at the Staples Center despite having LeBron James at a higher level. Not even with the king of Akron at 38 points after 38 minutes has it earned the home team to secure victory in their fiefdom. That says a lot.

Marc Gasol, in addition to Anthony Davis, was absent; in the case of Spanish, by the protection protocol against the coronavirus. Montrezl Harrell was the starting center and he was fatal. Damian Jones of the Suns last month was one of those who played to cover these losses. Alex Caruso also had to retire before the end due to back problems. A chrome these Lakers. But the Suns had their share: in the third quarter a protest by Devin Booker produced a double technique, despite the fact that nothing punishable enough for it is seen in the television shots, which led him to the locker room in full submission to the rival.

The Suns held out well. And with a weak game from Chris Paul facing the basket. The secondary ones are important in the group that Monty Williams directs. Leaving them air to spare is dangerous. If it's not Payne and Johnson, it's Bridges and Saric. The threat is real: they are seconds in the conference, only with the Jazz ahead. Phoenix begins to see the sun after so many years in the shade. It is only the beginning of the road, but it gives a smile.

From the beginning it was seen that it was going to be a complicated night for Los Angeles. A bit of LeBron on both rings and taking advantage of rival mistakes was the only thing they experienced in the first quarter. Booker's dominance, who went to the hoop without anyone stopping him, did the rest.

Caldwell-Pope started dialing him, Caruso did later. Nobody beat him one-on-one. This caused that they made double defenses to him and that, intelligently, he let his companions that put baskets in those actions in which they threw themselves on him. With that strategy the Suns nailed a 0-12 partial, only broken by a Schröder basket, and with a ten advantage to live more calmly.

After the first contact with the game, the Lakers opened the field more and were more reliable in attack. Talen Horton-Tucker was important once again. But abroad it lacked much more success. Even Dennis Schröder could have selected something better.

Bridges hit a 3-pointer before half-time that stretched a lead that had been reduced early in the second quarter. Even the Lakers could get ahead. LeBron, who finished 16 of 24 in shots, pulled the car knowing that the lack of players was already joining the boredom in some of his teammates.

In that third act, Booker was sent off, which changed the way the Suns played but did not seem to do them all the damage that it should, on paper, have caused them.

Dario Saric was one of those who stuck his face out. The advantage fluctuated, but there it was. The Balkan contributed 10 of his 21 points in the last period to settle this partial victory and make it final. The Lakers were outmatched in the game and also in the standings after the loss: the Suns are already ahead of the champion.

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