Durant leads Suns to 2OT win over Jazz
The Manila Times
LOS ANGELES: Phoenix star Kevin Durant scored 39 points and thwarted Utah’s Lauri Markkanen at the final buzzer on Sunday (Monday in Manila) as the Suns beat the Jazz 140-137 in an NBA double-overtime thriller. Durant added eight rebounds and 10 assists while Devin Booker scored 26 points for the Suns. Markkanen led Utah with 38 points and grabbed 17 rebounds. Durant scored eight points in the second overtime, which the Suns led 138-135 with 43.2 seconds left. Markkanen’s layup sliced the deficit to one but Booker drained two free throws to put Phoenix up 140-137 with nine-tenths of a second left. Markkanen had a last chance, with officials initially ruling he was fouled by Durant on a failed three-point attempt. But that call was overturned on review and the Suns had the win. Utah had trailed much of the night before Markkanen forced the first overtime with a layup with 20.3 seconds left in regulation. Phoenix jumped to a 123-118 lead in the first extra session, but Utah clawed back and Collin Sexton forced a second overtime with a putback layup. Durant notched his 12th straight game with 25 or more points, the longest such streak in Suns history. “I’m just trying to stay prepared on off days and before games, just trying to follow the game plan to execute as much as I can and play with a calm and free spirit,” Durant said. The Los Angeles Lakers, fueled by a season-high 37 points from superstar LeBron James, held off the Houston Rockets 105-104.