If I told you one NBA player was going to score 70 points on Friday, you probably wouldn’t have guessed it would be Devin Booker.
On a night that featured marquee NBA stars like Stephen Curry, James Harden, Isaiah Thomas, Anthony Davis and -- yes -- LeBron James, it was Booker who stole the show. The 20-year-old scored 51 points in the second half and 28 in the fourth quarter en route to becoming just the sixth NBA player to score 70 points in a game.
As incredible as the night was, however, it was even more perplexing. Here are a few strange things about Booker’s historic night.
He only made four 3-pointers
Booker shot 4-of-11 from 3-point range. Can someone, anyone, explain how in today’s NBA a perimeter player can score 70 points while only making FOUR 3-pointers? Booker’s a streak shooter in the truest sense of the term, and when he gets hot he gets scorching hot. So when news broke that he scored 70 in a game, most people probably assumed he had at least seven or eight 3s. When Klay Thompson broke out for 60 points earlier this season he made eight from beyond the arc, and even that seemed like too few. Booker’s four is nearly impossible to comprehend.
He made 24 free throws
Booker didn’t make 3s, but he did get to the line -- a lot. An absurd amount, if we’re being honest. Booker was 24-of-26 from the charity stripe. He had only attempted 24 free throws in his previous six games combined. I know the Celtics are a physical defensive team, but 26 free-throw attempts is insane.
He had a season-high in rebounds
Under normal circumstances, Booker isn’t exactly a stat-stuffer. He’s averaging a pedestrian 3.1 assists and 3.1 rebounds to go along with his 20.9 points per game this season. Isn’t it curious, then, that in a game where he took on so much of the Suns’ scoring load, that he would also haul in a season-high eight rebounds? If you’re on the verge of making NBA history by getting buckets, the last thing you’re thinking about is crashing the boards. Again, weird.
We witnessed something special on Friday night, but it might have been the strangest 70-point game you’ll ever see.