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Thursday, June 30, 2022
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Thursday, June 30, 2022
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    Suns edge Bucks 128-127 after foul in final second of OT

    MILWAUKEE (AP) — Devin Booker said he knew he’d been fouled as he put up a shot in the final second of overtime. His coach agreed.

    “I heard the slap,” Phoenix Suns coach Monty Williams said. “I was just concerned as to when it happened. I wanted to make sure it happened before the buzzer went off.”

    It did – barely.

    Officials determined PJ Tucker fouled Booker before time expired and put 0.3 seconds on the clock. Booker made the first of two free throws amid a chorus of boos from the Milwaukee crowd to give the Suns a 128-127 overtime victory over the Bucks yesterday.

    “I don’t think anybody was arguing that it was a foul or not,” Booker said.

    “I think they were seeing if the foul happened before or after the horn. It was a smack across the wrist that was very loud. The ref made the right call.”

    That final sequence took place after Milwaukee’s Khris Middleton had tied the game on a three-pointer with 22.1 seconds left.

    Phoenix Suns’ Devin Booker drives to the basket against multiple Milwaukee Bucks defenders during the game. PHOTO: AP

    Jae Crowder inbounded a pass to Booker, who attempted to get free for a shot while getting hounded by Jrue Holiday.

    Holiday reached his left arm out at one point, and Tucker converged and had his right arm near Booker just as the Suns guard shot from in front of Phoenix’s bench. Officials determined Tucker’s right arm hit Booker’s left elbow.

    “It is what it is,” said Tucker, whose tying three-pointer with 1:17 left had helped the Bucks erase an early six-point overtime deficit. “They made the call. I think in that situation, that’s a tough call to make. Tie game. Overtime.”

    Booker made the first free throw for his 24th point. He missed the second attempt, and the buzzer went off before the Bucks could put up any kind of shot.

    The free throw capped a wild game that featured 24 lead changes and 16 ties. There were 20 lead changes in the first half alone.

    Phoenix rallied to take the lead after trailing by seven with over four minutes left in the fourth quarter. Middleton made a go-ahead three-pointer and Booker made a tying jumper in the final minute of regulation.

    “It was everything that the playoffs are,” Williams said. “Emotion. Physical. Players making plays. Late-game situations. It was all of that.”

    Chris Paul had 22 points, 13 assists and seven rebounds for the Suns, who were opening a five-game trip in which they play five of the top six teams in the Eastern Conference standings.

    Paul increased his career assist total to 10,145 to overtake Magic Johnson (10,141) for fifth place in NBA history. Paul called the achievement surreal and added afterward he planned to send the ball to Johnson in hopes of getting it autographed.

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