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Down by 16, Suns rise up to steal thrilling win from Kings 108-107

© Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

The Phoenix Suns came back from down as many as 16 to defeat the Sacramento Kings 108-107 in their second-to-last game of the season and lock up a top-7 seed in the Western Conference.

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“We wanted this win,” Bradley Beal said after the game. “It’s playoff time, we can’t lose … We want to win a ring. It’s time. It’s time. I’m hype as hell, let’s go!”

Phoenix (48-32) now goes into its last contest on Sunday against the Minnesota Timberwolves needing a win and New Orleans Pelicans loss to clinch a top-6 seed. If not, the Suns will be the No. 7 seed and host the first play-in game against either the Kings (45-36), Los Angeles Lakers (46-35) or Golden State Warriors (45-36). Every single No. 7 seed in the history of the play-in tournament has advanced to the playoffs.

The Pelicans host the Lakers on Sunday.

Beal stripped De’Aaron Fox on the final possession to seal the win for Phoenix. 

This came after Beal took over for Phoenix, scoring 12 of his 20 points in the fourth quarter, converting nine of his 13 (69%) shots on the night. 

Despite 19 team turnovers, the Suns held Sacramento to 44% shooting on the night (49-of-91), while shooting 53% (40-of-76) on their own. 

Every starter for Phoenix scored in double-figures, as Kevin Durant led with 28 points on 11-of-20 shooting and five rebounds. Devin Booker ended with 21 points (7-of-12 shooting), six assists and four rebounds. Grayson Allen scored nine of his 19 points in the fourth, shooting 4-for-8 from 3 on the night. Jusuf Nurkić posted his 28th double-double of the season with 10 points and 10 rebounds.


Sacramento also had all five starters finish in double-figures, led by Domantas Sabonis’ 25 points, 12 rebounds and nine assists. Keegan Murray and De’Aaron Fox both had 23 points.

With the victory, Suns won the season series 3-2 over Sacramento, winning the last three contests. Every single meeting ended within 10 points. 

Game Flow

The Suns were really off offensively in the first quarter, ending the quarter with six turnovers and shooting 1-for-6 from deep. However, their defense looked alright, but the Kings still led 27-22 at the end of the quarter, led by 11 points and four rebounds from Sabonis.

This bled into the second quarter, as Phoenix was up to 13 turnovers at halftime, and the Kings extended their lead to 54-45 after a late 9-0 run in the period.

Then, both teams got hot in the third quarter, but the Suns won the period 33-31 after once trailing by as many as 16. Booker scored 14 in the quarter alone as the Suns shot 13-for-21 (62%) in the quarter and 5-of-9 (56%) from 3. Phoenix trailed 85-78 at the end of the third, but put itself in prime position to comeback in the fourth.

The Suns started off the fourth quarter with two straight 3s (Beal and Allen) to cut the Kings lead five less than a minute into the period. Beal then tied up the game at 91 with a huge 3 with 9:19 remaining. The Kings responded very well to this start to the quarter by Phoenix, as they went up 103-96 with 4:48 remaining after a Murray 3.

However, the Suns kept chipping away at the lead with a great defensive effort. Beal made arguably the play of the game with 1:02 left when he stole a Sabonis pass to Fox and took it all the way for an uncontested layup to make it 107-105 Kings. 

A foul by Sabonis on a rebound allowed Durant to tie the game at 107 at the free throw line with 51 seconds left. Then, Nurkić hit one out of two free throws with eight seconds left after Sabonis fouled him on another box-out situation.

Beal then made the game-winning play by stealing the ball from Fox.

The Kings only shot 35% in the fourth quarter, while Beal had 18 of his 20 points in the second half on 8-of-9 shooting.

Next Up

The Suns will take on the Minnesota Timberwolves (56-25) at 12:30 p.m. on Sunday, a very important game for both teams. Minnesota is currently in a three-way tie for first place in the Western Conference (would be the No. 2 seed if the season ended today).

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Brendan Mau is a senior writer covering the Phoenix Suns and more for Burn City Sports. You can follow him on X via @Brendan_Mau

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