James Harden, Nets complete epic 24-point comeback in 128-124 win over Suns

James Harden

James Harden scored 38 points, Joe Harris added 22 and the Brooklyn Nets overcame a 24-point deficit to stun the Phoenix Suns 128-124 on Tuesday night UFA.

The Nets were playing without two of their three main stars, but Harden was more than up for the challenge against the Suns. Kevin Durant was out with a hamstring injury while Kyrie Irving was held out with lower back tightness.

Harden’s 3-pointer from a few feet beyond the arc with 31 seconds left gave the Nets their first lead of the game at 126-124 and he hit two more free throws with 11.3 seconds remaining to polish off the win. The Suns didn’t score over the final 2:48 of the game.

Brooklyn won its fourth straight game in a triumphant return to Phoenix for coach Steve Nash. The Suns had their six-game winning streak snapped.

Chris Paul scored 29 points, including 17 in the fourth quarter, but it wasn’t enough for the Suns. Devin Booker added 22.

Phoenix jumped out a 33-22 lead in the first quarter after shooting 56.5% from the field. The Suns were even better in the second, pouring in 42 points to grab a 75-54 halftime lead.

Brooklyn sliced Phoenix’s lead to 100-88 by the end of the third quarter. The Nets would pull within 108-106 midway through the fourth after a corner 3-pointer from Tyler Johnson but the Suns responded with a dunk from Deandre Ayton and a 3 from Mikal Bridges and it looked like they would regain control.

But the Nets had one more run. James Harden sliced through the Suns’ defense to pull Brooklyn within 124-121 with 1:39 left. Jeff Green’s layup with 59 seconds made it 124-123. That set up Harden’s decisive 3-pointer on the next possession.

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