There’s a purpose Chris Paul is named “The Point God.”
In the Suns’ 123-98 victory over the Nuggets on Wednesday night time, Paul put collectively a efficiency that the majority NBA level guards can solely dream about. He totaled 17 factors, 15 assists and 5 rebounds in 31 minutes. Making his displaying much more spectacular, the 11-time All-Star did not commit a single turnover.
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“Just reading the game, man, just finding open guys, picking my spots,” Paul advised TNT’s Chris Haynes after Phoenix’s Game 2 win, which gave the Suns a 2-0 sequence lead. “We’ve got an unbelievable team.”
The Suns had six gamers attain double figures, and 12 gamers scored not less than two factors. Phoenix additionally stifled Denver’s offensive assault, limiting the Nuggets to 40 p.c capturing from the sphere.
While it was definitely a bunch effort, Paul’s stat line stood out not simply inside this single field rating, but additionally in the broader image of playoff historical past.
15 and 0
Paul registered his third profession playoff recreation with 15 or extra assists and 0 turnovers, essentially the most such video games in the 16-team period, per Stathead.
He can also be the primary participant with 15 factors, 15 assists and 0 turnovers in a playoff recreation since, of course, Chris Paul. He has now hit these numbers with three completely different groups (Hornets in 2008, Clippers in 2014, Suns in 2021).
.@NBA playoff video games with 15+ factors, 15+ assists and 0 turnovers since 1984:
Chris Paul, 3
Magic Johnson, 1
Jason Kidd, 1
Everyone else mixed, 0
(H/t Stathead) https://t.co/f8nj5JEGNw
— Phoenix Suns (@Suns) June 10, 2021
15, 15 and 5
With CP3 nonetheless enjoying at an elite stage, it is simple to neglect the man turned 36 years previous final month.
Only three gamers age 35 or older have posted not less than 15 factors, 15 assists and 5 rebounds in a postseason recreation, (*2*): Paul, LeBron James and John Stockton. Pretty good firm.
|May 5, 2000||Stockton||17||15||7|
|Aug. 18, 2020||James||23||16||17|
|June 9, 2021||Paul||17||15||5|
By shelling out 15 assists Wednesday, Paul pushed his playoff whole to 974. That moved him forward of Lakers legend Jerry West for 14th on the all-time playoff assists listing.
Paul might bounce previous Isiah Thomas (987) in Game 3, and if the Suns make a deep run, he might finish up in the highest 10 by the top of the postseason.
In Phoenix’s first-round sequence towards Los Angeles, Paul shot uncharacteristically poorly, largely as a result of he was coping with a shoulder damage he suffered in the Suns’ playoff opener. His discipline aim share dipped beneath 40 p.c, and he drained simply two of his 10 3-point makes an attempt over six video games.
Now with that shoulder at round 90 p.c, in line with Haynes, Paul seems to be rather more like himself. After going 6 of 10 in Game 2, Paul is capturing 58.3 p.c from the sphere in the Western Conference semifinals, together with 4 of 5 from past the arc.
That’s a promising signal for a Phoenix squad that’s peaking on the excellent time.