It's been an up-and-down season for the Phoenix Suns but they continue to battle. After a positive 7-4 start, they had lost seven of their last nine coming into this game against the New Orleans Pelicans.
For the second time in the last three games, the Suns withstood a double-digit second-half comeback rally to register two wins in three games for the first time since mid-November.
In a game where they needed an extra five minutes to come out victorious against a Pelicans squad that had lost six straight, here are the biggest takeaways:
Booker breaks out of slump
For a player who was shooting percentages of 50-40-90 (53.7%-50.0%-94.7%) over the first 12 games of the season, Devin Booker has been in a struggle in the last eight games, at least by his standards.
Over the last eight games, Booker had never shot better than 50% from the field and has shot a combined 14-of-48 (29.2%) from beyond the arc.
He bounced back from that perimeter slump in this game, scoring his season-high 44 on 13-of-24 (54.2%) shooting from the field and 5-of-11 (45.5%) from 3-point land.
Devin Booker scored a season-high 44 points in an OT win at the Pelicans. It was his 11th career 40-point game - the second-most in Suns team history behind Amar'e Stoudemire's 15. #RisePHX https://t.co/USyNDFp8Gm pic.twitter.com/gSOSLLiitn- StatMuse (@statmuse) December 6, 2019
Before the Pelicans made their rally in the fourth quarter, Booker scored 21 (6-7 FG's) of his 44 in the third quarter to open the game up as he helped the Suns outscore the Pelicans 33-21 in the period.
Registering nine assists and eight rebounds in this game, for the second time this season, he missed out on recording his first career triple-double.
Lonzo Ball's breakout game
Playing 43 minutes, Lonzo Ball had arguably the best game with the Pelicans.
He balled for season-highs of 20 points (6-9 FG's) and 10 assists while also recording six rebounds, three steals and two blocks. He had a couple of impressive step-back 3-pointers from the corner including one that brought the deficit down to two.
LONZO FROM DOWNTOWN pic.twitter.com/90a0EIAhDw- New Orleans Pelicans (@PelicansNBA) December 6, 2019
Light at the end of the tunnel for the slumping Pelicans?
This is the seventh straight loss for the Pelicans. Over the course of these games, they were ranked 23rd in offensive rating (106.2), 28th in defensive rating (117.1), and 28th in net rating (-10.9).
The franchise's Executive VP of Basketball Operations David Griffin joined the Fox Sports New Orleans' broadcast and mentioned that Zion Williamson, the No. 1 pick in the 2019 Draft, could still meet the initial six-eight week timetable that was announced. Eight weeks puts the rookie's return in mid-December.
"From the very beginning, (the timetable) was put at a six-to-eight week recovery," Griffin said. "He continues to progress. He's progressing very well. He feels very good about his process. Eight weeks is several days from now."
After this game, the Pelicans' 6-16 record is second-wost in the West. Could Williamson spark this team to a run in the new year?