Devin Booker fired up and scored 70 points as he torched the Phoenix Suns‘ franchise record for points in a 130-120 loss to the Boston Celtics on Friday night at TD Garden, becoming the first player under 21 to score at least 60 points in an NBA game.
The 20-year-old second-year player beat the previous record of 60 points, set by Tom Chambers back on March 24, 1990 against the Seattle SuperSonics, which stood for the last 27 years. Booker becomes only the sixth player in NBA history to score 70 points in a game, joining a historic crowd of Wilt Chamberlain, Kobe Bryant, David Thompson, Elgin Baylor and David Robinson. He also set the record for most points against the Celtics, beating out Baylor’s 64 in the 1959-60 season, Jordan’s 63 in the 1985-86 playoffs and Chamberlain’s 62 during the 1961-62 campaign.
Booker had 19 points by the half before going on a flame-throwing run in the second half, he added 23 in the third and 28 more in the fourth, as the Suns fought hard to get back into a game the Celtics led by as many as 26 points.
”This doesn’t happen very often especially against a really good defensive team like the Boston Celtics,” Booker said. ”It’s a zone. It’s kind of hard to explain. I’ve been in those zones before, but never to this extent.”
Booker shot 21-of-40 from the field, including 4-of-11 from deep, and hit 24-of-26 free throws, including all 10 in the third quarter. His previous career best was 39, which he reached three times before Friday.
Booker, the son of former NBA and Grand Rapids Hoops player Melvin Booker, began his career at Grandville Middle and High School before transferring to Moss Point High School in Moss Point, Mississippi. He played his college years at the University of Kentucky.