“He’s made for these moments” — Chris Paul, Phoenix Suns’ 4th quarter leader, leads Phoenix Suns to Game 1 victory over New Orleans Pelicans

PHOENIX — The First Chris PaulHe heard Willie Green, his former coach and teammate, instruct him New Orleans PelicansHe was challenged by other players to shoot. After Paul had discarded the strategy, he told his friend.

Paul, who will be 37 in 3 weeks, was the oldest player in the playoffs to record 30 points & 10 assists. Phoenix SunsYou can also visit our website at 110-99 victoryIn Game 1 of the first round series, Sunday.

He passed Steve Nash who, at 36 years old, did the same thing as Paul in 2010 when he was a Suns player. Paul is now one the five only players to have 10 playoff games and scored 30 points or more. LeBron Jameshad 22 games and Michael Jordan had 15.

The majority of the points came in a furious fourth quarter rally, when Paul scored 17 points in just five minutes to defeat a Pelicans comeback effort. Green's decision not to let his defenders give Paul room by going under pick and rolls backfired as Paul made three 3-pointers straight while attacking a switching defense that left him up against the slower. Larry Nance Jr.

Paul commented, “That's almost like inviting me to shoot.” After taking a few shots, Paul looked over at Green several more times. “I know Willie. He's my man. It's all part and parcel of the game.

Green, an assistant to the Suns in the last season and who played alongside Paul on the LA ClippersThe Phoenix lead of 23 points was cut down to six by the then-New Orleans Hornets' bench-heavy lineup. This reduced Phoenix's lead to only six in the fourth quarter.

Paul broke the strategy, calling repeatedly for center Deandre AytonNance was forced to turn the switch when a screen is set. Green eventually had to remove Nance, who was very efficient with Paul on the bench from the game.

Green said, “We went underneath a couple screens and then he just stood behind and shot 3-ball.” Green said, “The mix-ups on our part, my coach's part. That coverage is not good enough. Chris, this is exactly what he does.

Paul assisted or scored 23 points for the Suns in the fourth-quarter. His 19 points were his second-highest in the fourth quarter of his career.

Suns star: “That man's a true competitor, and a winner,” Devin BookerThe score was 25 for a ‘Bobby', who scored 25 points. It shouldn't surprise anyone that he will want it so badly. You can see it in the way he walks and his demeanor. He was made for these moments.

In the first half, the Suns held the Pelicans to 22% shooting by the Suns Mikal BridgesPelicans guard were smothered by, who was named finalist for Defensive Play of the Year CJ McCollum. The Pelicans shot just 2-of-16 for the game when Bridges was the primary defender, according to ESPN Stats & Information tracking. McCollum scored 25 points, missed 16 shots, and was 0-for-9 when Bridges was on him.

Paul was also a great defender, resulting in three steals.

Monty Williams, Suns coach said that “it's just him ability to understand what he needs to do to take control of a game.” “I don't think that I've ever seen anyone like Chris with that innate sense for the time.

Andrew Lopez from ESPN contributed to this report.

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