Booker scores 24 points, depleted Suns rout Hornets 133-99

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  • Phoenix Suns
    Phoenix Suns
    LiveTodayTomorrowvs--|
  • Bismack Biyombo
    Bismack Biyombo
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  • Devin Booker
    Devin Booker
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  • Landry Shamet
    Landry Shamet
    American basketball player

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Devin Booker scored 24 points, Jalen Smith tied a career high with 19 points and 12 rebounds and the short-handed Phoenix Suns hammered the Charlotte Hornets 133-99 on Sunday night.

Chris Paul had 16 assists to help the Suns improve to 28-8 — a half-game behind Golden State for the NBA lead — after they lost three of their previous four.

The Suns got 11 points and six rebounds from Bismack Biyombo, who signed a 10-day contract Saturday with four Phoenix players in the NBA's health and safety protocols, including starting center Deandre Ayton, starting forward Jae Crowder and backup center JaVale McGee. Coach Monty Williams also is out.

Biyombo, playing in his first game of the season, made an easy transition into the Suns' rotation, including a dunk off an alley-oop lob from Landry Shamet. Biyombo played 18 minutes against his former team.

Shamet added 17 points, Mikal Bridges had 15, and Cam Johnson and Cam Payne 14 each.

LaMelo Ball had 17 points for the Hornets. They had won three in a row.

The Suns made 17 shots from beyond the 3-point arc and outrebounded the Hornets 52-35.

Despite missing more than 48 combined points per game from players who were out, the Suns bolted to a 73-47 halftime lead behind 20 points from Booker and 10-of-22 shooting from beyond the 3-point arc.

Phoenix led 43 in the second half.

Charlotte's Terry Rozier, who came into the game red hot having made 20 3s in the previous four games, struggled from the start and finished with nine points on 1-of-6 shooting from deep.

TIP INS

Suns: Abdel Nader also is out because of health and safety protocols.

Hornets: Miles Bridges had 10 points in his first game back from health and safety protocols. ... P.J. Washington remains in the protocols. ... Shot 9 of 35 from 3-point range.

UP NEXT

Suns: At New Orleans on Tuesday night.

Hornets: At Washington on Monday night.

___

More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/hub/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Steve Reed, The Associated Press

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