Devin Booker scored 47 points, including 25 in a spectacular third quarter, to lead the Phoenix Suns past the Los Angeles Clippers 136-130 and win the Western Conference first-round playoff series. The Clippers didn’t go quietly, nearly coming back from a 20-point deficit early in the fourth. Los Angeles had multiple chances to tie in the final three minutes, but could never convert. Durant made a layup to push Phoenix’s lead to 134-130 and then made two free throws to put the Suns up six with 31.3 seconds left. The Suns play the Denver Nuggets in the second round. Game 1 is on Saturday in Denver.
The top-seeded Denver Nuggets eliminated the Minnesota Timberwolves with a 112-109 win in Game 5 of their playoff series at Ball Arena on Tuesday night. The Nuggets got a triple-double from Nikola Jokic and 35 points from Jamal Murray to hand Michael Malone his 25th playoff win as Denver’s head coach. That surpasses the 24 wins Doug Moe won in the playoffs with the Nuggets. The Wolves were led by Anthony Edwards’ 29 points, but his 3-pointer at the buzzer that would have sent the game into overtime hit the back of the iron.