Suns superstar Devin Booker led the way with 35 points, including a near half-court three pointer as the shot clock expired in the third quarter of action.
The Thunder stormed out of the gates, and even led by as much as 15 before the Suns stormed back to take a lead they would never give up.
“We haven’t accomplished anything,” Suns head coach Monty Williams said (h/t ESPN). “That may sound like coach-speak, but we dug ourselves a hole with our record. We scrapped all year long and won some games, but it’s been an uphill battle.”
“We’ve done a good job of getting to this point,” Williams said. “No one knew we were going to be here, but we’re here and we’re thankful for that.”
“In an NBA season guys are going to make mistakes,” Williams said. “You have to be able to give people grace. It wasn’t intentional. Thankfully he was able to get tested early enough that he was able to come back and play, and the guys received him with open arms because we all understand we’re human.”
The Suns played the first quarter without center DeAndre Ayton because he missed his coronavirus test on Sunday. Ayton tested negative on Monday and was cleared.
The Thunder played without four of their five top scorers due to a number of injuries.
While the Suns’ chances of making the playoffs, or qualifying for the play-in tournament are thin, they are playing inspired basketball.
“I thought their pressure disrupted us,” Thunder coach Billy Donovan said. “I thought we got a little bit stagnant. We made some pretty decent plays. We were able to get some open looks, but I thought there in the second quarter they turned up their defensive intensity and that probably took us out of some rhythm.”
“I was telling the guys on the team `I was open.” Booker joked. “No, I’m just messing with you. It was late in the shot clock, decided I had to get one on the rim.”
“What’s working for us is we’ve committed to a style of play,” Williams said. “We’ve been able to adapt to different situations. Being in this bubble has been like two training camps for us.”
The Suns will now prepare for another crucial game on Tuesday, when they go up against the Philadelphia 76ers.