How the Suns’ Devin Booker stays fresh to carry a heavy workload against the Bucks in the NBA Finals

PHOENIX – Sometimes, he can just ask the question. Other times, it may just take a look.

Phoenix Suns coach Monty Williams is well aware that six-year-old goalkeeper Devin Booker is just 24 years old. But sometimes Williams still finds it necessary to check if Booker needs rest. Then he quickly realizes that he should not have overcome the issue.

“It’s offensive to him when I ask him about his stamina,” Williams said. “I’m sure it happens. But the really good players and great players in this league do not allow themselves to get tired of stopping them from doing what they have to do.”

In the Suns’ 118-108 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks in Game 2 of the NBA Finals, Booker scored big points (31), shots (12-of-25 overall, 7-of-12 of 3) and minutes (44). ). Phoenix discovered that Booker did it not only based on his youth and sports. Booker has already incorporated tips he learned from teammate Chris Paul, former Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant and other veterans on how to maximize his stamina and energy.

“It’s everything,” Booker said. “I get pieces from all my mentors for dieting, strength training and taking care of your body to endure these moments.”

So it came as no surprise that Booker was currently ready for a central 2 game that gave the Suns a 2-0 lead. After losing seven of his first 10 shots, Booker quickly corrected. He made two consecutive 3 points that gave the Suns a 101-88 lead with 7:13 remaining in the fourth quarter.

How could Booker’s lesson be fixed so quickly?

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NEW MONTH:How Williams evolved as a coach to lead the Suns to the NBA Finals

ASSISTANCE REQUESTED:John, the Bucks need a lot more than Holiday and Middleton

The Suns see how Booker remains disciplined with shooting mechanisms in both practice and games. Paul remarked that Booker “remains in attack mode throughout the game”.

“The thing about Devin is that he shoots the same way in the first quarter, in the fourth quarter, it doesn’t matter,” Williams said. “His shot looks the same. He’s a guy who put a ton of work into the shot. But the mentality is calm in those moments.”

And he is calm in these moments partly because he has the stamina to keep going. Sometimes young players can practice this while breaking free from bad habits. Not Booker, who pushed the Suns to call him an “old soul” because he treats his art like an established veteran, hoping to make his first years last a little longer.

“It’s the cure, it’s the plans, it’s everything,” Paul said. “We have a day in between games or something, I could shoot a little and then sit outside. But the book really wants to take some shots. And it’s all game speed.”

The Suns pointed out that many other players have shown these consistent work habits, including Cameron Payne, Jae Crowder and other roles. But not everyone has Booker’s talent to match this work ethic.

“Every guy I’ve found has something in them to push them to exhaustion,” Williams said. “That’s why these guys work the way they do in the summer, so they can be ready for those moments when they’re tired, it doesn’t fit their game.”

So it comes as no surprise that I will hear Booker’s answer about whether he will play for the US team at the Tokyo Olympics later this month: “I will be there,” he said.

Booker said he told Team USA manager Jerry Colangelo and coach Gregg Popovich that he wanted to play, even though their first game was on July 25, just three days after a possible Game 7 of the NBA Finals.

“It’s very important. It’s my goal in life,” Booker said. “I think it’s the most famous event basketball can find. So to be part of representing your country, I think it takes you to a whole other stratosphere. I was just thinking about the kids who came in front of us and represented our country. “I do not think” I think there is anything better than winning a gold medal. “

The victory of the NBA Finals will come second. If the Suns finish the series this week after Game 4 (Wednesday) or Game 5 (July 17), Booker may have more time to recharge before Tokyo starts.

Williams may not want to mention this idea. Booker can look at him.

“We are young and we take it and try to take care of it,” Booker said. “So I’m not feeling tired, actually.”

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