When the confetti fell on the Fiserv Forum, the camera saw Phoenix Suns superstar Devin Booker capture the moment and Milwaukee Bucks celebrate the NBA Championship for the first time in 50 years.
After climbing 2-0 in the first two games of the NBA Finals, he had to feel very close to the first title in franchise history and be able to portray it vividly in his dreams.
Losing four consecutive games to dispel the hope of those championships must be stabbed in a particular way.
“I’ve never felt such a scar in my life,” Booker told the media after the season.
At the age of 24, you would think it’s safe to assume that he will return to the final stage. But not everyone is as lucky as LeBron James to be in the finals for the eighth consecutive year.
Charles Barkley arrived there at the age of 29, played for another seven seasons, and never returned. Shawn Kemp arrived there at the age of 26 and played for another seven seasons, but never returned. James Harden and Russell Westbrook have arrived at 22 and 23, respectively, and are still aiming for their first return to the big stage.
So this is not an easy task, and even a young and talented team like Sands rarely comes to the conclusion.
But Booker knows that.
After missing a playoff in the first five seasons of his career, he was ready to step up and prove himself on his first chance in the bright spotlight of the NBA Playoffs.
And he had a coming out party!
Starting with a bang, he first played against defending champion Los Angeles Lakers with 34 points, 8 assists and 7 boards. I could feel that there was something special. He confirmed the concept of handing Lebron the exit of the first round of his illustrious career when he closed the series, dropping 47 points and 11 rebounds after five games. According to Elias Sports Bureau, It was the second most point in history in a series clinch game with the defending NBA champion. This is pretty specific, but it’s also pretty relevant.
And he wasn’t over yet.
Booker posted impressive 34 points and 11 rebounds to help complete the clean sweep of MVP Nikola Jokić and Denver Nuggets in the Conference Semifinals. Phoenix’s week-long layoff from the end of the series to the start of the conference finals forced All-Star Guard Chris Paul to enter the league’s health and safety protocol and miss the first two games against the LA Clippers. I did.
How could Sands beat the Clippers (and the then healthy Kawhi Leonard) without CP3? Booker confirmed that it would happen.
Nova put together the best performance of his career, aiming for his first triple-double with 40 points, 13 rebounds and 11 assists, giving the team a life without a leader.
Phoenix won the series in six games, making its debut after the season for the first time in ten years and advancing to the second NBA Finals in franchise history.
So Booker continued to write his name in history books.
When he scored 42 points in Game 4 and 40 points in Game 5. He joined an elite company Jerry West, Rick Barry, Michael Jordan, Shaquille O’Neal, LeBron James, and Janice Adetokumpo (who achieved great achievements in Games 2 and 3) are the only consecutive 40-point game players in final history.
Booker finished the playoffs with a total of 601 points. Beyond Barry’s previous record (521 points in 1967) The most points in the NBA’s debut postseason. If Sands could make a comeback 3-2, the 24-year-old guard might have been heading for the Finals MVP award.
Instead, he and his team were left with a learning experience.
“Experience is the best teacher,” he said after losing. “… this is what you enter in the summer, you take it and use it as fuel.”
By the time this story is released, Booker doesn’t have much time to immerse himself in what he’s experienced now, as the bucket getter has already landed in Tokyo to compete for Team USA at the Olympics.
They say basketball never stops, and Booker is trying to experience it first hand and help lead the United States to the fourth consecutive Olympic gold medal in a blink of an eye. After the Olympics end in early August, Booker will only have a month off to get back to work and head to a training camp for the 2021-22 season. There, Sands repeatedly challenges as the Western Conference champion. To return to that elusive NBA Finals stage.
There are some hurdles to clear before reaching that point-Paul’s pending player options are the greatest of all-but when the season comes, Booker returns where he was just missing. Because of this, you will be hungry as before.
Whether or not Phoenix can do that, there is one thing that is certain after performing this playoff. Devin Booker is a true star in the league and hasn’t got the best since the age of 24.
The views on this page do not necessarily represent the views of the NBA or its club.
NBA Finals 2021: Devin Booker’s remarkable playoff debut leaves a thirst for returning to the final stage | NBA.com Australia
Source link NBA Finals 2021: Devin Booker’s remarkable playoff debut leaves a thirst for returning to the final stage | NBA.com Australia