Bojan Bogdanovic, Bradley Beal, John Wall lead Wizards past pesky Suns, 131-127
PHOENIX (AP) Bojan Bogdanovic scored 29 points, setting a franchise record for free throws made by going 16 of 16, and the Washington Wizards opened a five-game western trip with a 131-127 victory over the pesky Phoenix Suns on Tuesday night.
Bradley Beal had 27 points and John Wall added 25 points and 14 assists in a victory that ended the Suns’ three-game winning streak, their longest since November 2015.
Eric Bledsoe scored 30 points for the Suns, who erased a 22-point, first-half deficit, were tied at 110 with 5:16 to play and challenged the Wizards in the final two minutes before Wall finally clinched it with two free throws with 6.5 seconds to play.
Devin Booker scored 25 for the Suns, nine in the final 21 seconds.
Phoenix’s Jared Dudley was ejected from the game in the second quarter for a head butt to Washington’s Jason Smith. The Wizards’ Brandon Jennings also was tossed for making “an inappropriate gesture.”
Tyler Ulis, whose 3-pointer at the buzzer beat Boston on Sunday, sank a 16-footer to tie it for Phoenix at 110-all with 5:16 to play.
But Bogdanovic’s third 3-pointer of the game started the decisive Washington run, a 12-2 surge that put the Wizards ahead 122-112 with 2:50 left on one of Wall’s many driving layups.
Phoenix cut it to 122-118 but Beal drove the lane for a powerful dunk. Booker made it a three-point game twice in the waning seconds, first with a three-point play, then with an extra-long 3-pointer. But Bogdanovic and Wall each sank two free throws and the Wizards escaped.
Washington dominated early and built a 56-34 lead on Smith’s 17-footer with 7:12 left in the half.
Bledsoe’s 3-pointer triggered a comeback.
Phoenix scored 14 consecutive points and eventually cut the lead to 62-61 before Washington scored the last six points of the half to lead 68-61.
Phoenix opened the second half with a 20-2 run but Washington immediately responded, scoring the next 12 to go back on top 82-81 after Wall’s three-point play with 3:52 left in the third.
Wizards: Washington beat Phoenix for the fourth straight time. ... Ex-Sun Markieff Morris was still the villain but the boos weren’t quite as hearty as in the past. ... The five-game trip is the Wizards’ longest of the season. ... Beal and Booker have the most 3-pointers before their 21st birthday in NBA history. Beal had 229 before turning 21. Booker has 218 and doesn’t turn 21 until Oct. 30.
Suns: Ulis’ 25-footer to beat Boston Sunday was the Suns’ third buzzer-beater of the season, most by any team in the NBA. The others were by Bledsoe and Booker.
Dudley’s head-butt incident started when Smith knocked diminutive Ulis to the court with a rough screen in the backcourt. Smith was called for the foul but the two sides’ tempers erupted. Dudley ran to Smith and clearly head butted the big Washington player. After referees reviewed the video, Dudley was tossed. Jennings also was ejected for his hand gesture.
Wizards: Washington plays at Denver on Wednesday night.
Suns: Phoenix closes out a five-game homestand against the Los Angeles Lakers on Thursday.