The Milwaukee Bucks moved one game away from an NBA championship on Saturday night with a thrilling Game 5 win in Phoenix that saw Giannis Antetokounmpo once again create the signature moment — alongside Jrue Holiday — on the emphatic alley-oop finish that proved to be the dagger after Holiday ripped the ball and the game away from Devin Booker.
For the second straight game, Booker had 40 points in a losing effort as his Herculean efforts on the offensive end just weren’t enough to withstand the more balanced onslaught from the Bucks, who finally got a complete offensive performance from their Big Three. For much of the game, Booker’s backcourt mate was quiet offensively, as Chris Paul continued to struggle with the ball pressure and size of Holiday, but came alive in the fourth to serve as the catalyst for Phoenix’s comeback effort that fell just short.
Much has been made this postseason about Paul finally making his first Finals in his 16th season and the Suns have been open about wanting to get him to that championship, but in the moment the furthest thing from their minds is Paul’s legacy. That didn’t stop a reporter on Saturday night for asking arguably the worst question of the Finals when, with Booker and Paul at the podium, someone asked Booker how frustrated he was for Chris after the loss. Booker, unsurprisingly, wasn’t interested in even acknowledging the question.
"Devin how frustrated are you for Chris right now?"
D-Book wasn't having it pic.twitter.com/5ib4XBVrzv
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) July 18, 2021
There are times for legacy questions and times to talk about how folks feel about their teammates, but moments after a loss to go down 3-2 is not the time to ask the guy who just scored 40 in said loss for whether he feels bad for their teammate moving a loss away from falling short of a title. Everyone on the Suns wants to win a championship this year, not just Paul, and if anything, Paul’s presence on the team makes them all acutely aware of how rare these opportunities present themselves. So, a fair warning to my fellow media members, if the Suns lose Game 6, don’t ask anyone other than Chris Paul about how difficult that loss is for Chris Paul.