Chris Paul decided that the Suns were going to win Game 1 of their playoff series against the Pelicans, so that’s how it went. With each stepback jumper, fake pass into a blow-by layup, and defensive stop, it became clear that the near-37-year-old was in total control.
Paul ended the night with 30 points on 12-of-16 shooting with 10 assists and seven rebounds. Those numbers toppled Steve Nash’s record as the oldest player to score 30 with 10 dimes in a playoff game.
It’s funny how four years ago the discourse was over Paul’s “pricey,” four-year $160 million deal with the Rockets. Now, he’s leading the best team in the NBA to a 1-0 series lead on a fresh, four-year $120 million contract nobody’s talking about.
Suns (-10, win by more than 10 points) to cover the spread in Game 2 (-112, bet $112 to win $100)
Suns to win the series vs. Pelicans in a four-game sweep, +170 (bet $100 to win $170)
Suns to win the championship, +210 (bet $100 to win $210)
Valanciunas had a spectacular night scoring 18 points with 25 rebounds, and though the Pels lost, he was some people’s hero for missing a meaningless 3-foot tip-in with 27.1 seconds to play.
That miss made the difference for those who bet the Sun’s point spread, which was -10.5. Phoenix won 110-99, an 11-point margin that covered the spread, and only made possible by the blunder,