Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker (R) attempts to shoot over Milwaukee Bucks guard Pat Connaughton (L) during the second half in Game 2 of the 2021 NBA Finals on Thursday at Phoenix Suns Arena in Arizona. Photo by Tannen Maury/EPA-EFE
July 8 (UPI) -- Behind 31 points from star guard Devin Booker, the Phoenix Suns beat the Milwaukee Bucks 118-108 in Game 2 of the NBA Finals on Thursday night in Arizona, moving two wins away from their first championship in franchise history.
Booker shot 12-of-25 from the field, including 7-of-12 from 3-point range, in the victory as Phoenix grabbed a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven series. Game 3 is set for Sunday night at Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee.
The Suns trailed by nine more than halfway into the first quarter before pulling away late in the second. Booker's 22-foot jumper with 4:39 left before halftime gave Phoenix the lead for good, with the Suns holding a double-digit lead for large portions of the third and fourth quarters.
"We had the lead going into the fourth quarter, and we wanted to hold that," Booker said. "... We just wanted to win the game at all costs."
Mikal Bridges added 27 points and seven rebounds for the Suns, who also got 23 points and eight assists from veteran point guard Chris Paul. Deandre Ayton (10 points, 11 rebounds) and Jae Crowder (11 points, 10 rebounds) each had double-doubles.
The Suns overcame Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo's stellar 42-point outing. The two-time NBA MVP shot 15-of-22 from the field and recorded 12 rebounds and three blocks in the loss.
Jrue Holiday tallied 17 points, seven assists and five rebounds for the Bucks. Khris Middleton had just 11 points on 5-of-16 shooting, and Pat Connaughton scored 14 off the bench.
Game 2 of the championship series will tip off at 8 p.m. EDT Sunday in Milwaukee.