Lakers Take Advantage of Booker Injury in Rout of Phoenix Suns


Getty Josh Hart, Kyle Kuzma, and Lonzo Ball of the Los Angeles Lakers

The Lakers stunned the Phoenix Suns on Sunday with a 47-point turnaround rout in Los Angeles, even after the Suns began the game with a significant lead. The Suns were hopeful leading up to the game–Devin Booker was returning after missing the team’s last matchup against the Orlando Magic with a toe injury, and though they still didn’t have their second-leading scorer in TJ Warren they could at least count on Booker’s 25 points per game.

The Suns had a substantial lead by the end of the first quarter, and it looked as though the Phoenix team would be able to snap their four-game losing streak and snap the Lakers’ winning streak in the process.

Well, things didn’t stay in the Suns’ favor for long as the Lakers proceeded to accomplish an astonishing 47-point turnaround. It didn’t help that Devin Booker was forced to leave the floor before halftime with an apparent hamstring injury.

Booker had only 6 points before leaving the game, far from the amount the team would need from their leading scorer to pull this game out. The Lakers ran all over them and by the fourth quarter were maintaining a comfortable 30-point lead.

Second-year player Kyle Kuzma went off in the win, contributing 23 points and 9 rebounds in his 29 mins of play. The crowd was electrified as the Lakers team further proved that their once-struggling chemistry is coming along quite nicely. LeBron James had 22 points and 8 assists in the win, many of which were absolutely magnificent dimes that had the crowd going wild.

Booker Can’t Catch a Break

While he remains a standout in the league (and has recently commented that he’d like a superteam to come to him in Phoenix), Devin Booker has suffered setback after setback as he’s missed games and battled injuries. He underwent surgery in September and missed the entire preseason–returning just in time for the team’s opening game against the Mavericks–but things have rarely gone this team’s way since then.

They’re 4-19 now after this loss to the Lakers, and it’s unclear how long Booker will take to recover from this latest setback.

We already know that it’s tough for this team to grind out a win, but without Booker in the lineup they’ll almost need a miracle from night to night. DeAndre Ayton is a standout rookie center, and the team has solid pieces in Trevor Ariza and others, but they just haven’t been able to finish out games. Until Booker gets back, wins will be even harder to come by.

READ NEXT: Rondo Injury Timeline: When Will Rondo Return to Play?

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