Brooklyn Nets guard Cam Thomas is making history, even in losses.
Thomas scored 43 points in the Nets’ 116-112 loss to the Phoenix Suns on Tuesday night, becoming the youngest player in NBA history with three straight 40-point games. He had 44, followed by a career-high 47 points on Monday.
After a 24-point first half, on 8-for-12 shooting, Thomas got off to a slow start to the second half. The Suns took a double-digit lead late in the fourth, but Thomas responded. He helped rally the Nets in the final 90 seconds, scoring 13 points, mostly from the free-throw line, during that span. He hit a pair of free throws that cut the Suns’ lead to 112-111 with 7.1 seconds remaining.
Thomas went to the free-throw line again with the Nets down 114-111 with 4.1 seconds left. He made the first free-throw and intentionally missed the second. Suns center Deandre Ayton grabbed the rebound though and sank the ensuing free throws to give Phoenix the win. The two free-throw makes gave Ayton 35 points, tying his career high.
Devin Booker scored 19 in his first game since Christmas, after missing the previous 21 games with a strained left groin. He had a strong stretch after the Suns led by just three midway through the fourth quarter. He scored six points and set up Ayton for another basket during a 13-4 run that pushed it to 109-97 with 2:25 to go.
Mikal Bridges scored 17 of his 21 points in the second half and played a key role in the defensive effort that cooled off Thomas just long enough for the Suns to build a 12-point lead with 2:25 remaining.
Nic Claxton and T.J. Warren had 17 points each for the Nets, who lost on back-to-back nights after trading Kyrie Irving and fell to 5-9 without the injured Kevin Durant. They opted not to play Spencer Dinwiddie and Dorian Finney-Smith, the players they acquired from the Mavericks in the trade for Irving.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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