Phoenix Suns look to end series vs. Pelicans after taking 3-2 lead

Challenge accepted.

After losing Game 4 Sunday in New Orleans, the Phoenix Suns responded like a top overall seed in beating the Pelicans, 112-97, in Tuesday’s pivotal Game 5 before a sellout crowd of 17,071 at Footprint Center in taking a 3-2 series lead.

“I thought, for the most part, we maintained the level of intensity tonight,” Suns coach Monty Williams said. “Our game discipline was about as good as we’ve seen in the playoffs for sure. I thought our guys were locked in to what we were trying to do.”

Apr 26, 2022;  Phoenix, Ariz, US;  Phoenix Suns forward Mikal Bridges (25) slams two after a foul by New Orleans Pelicans forward Brandon Ingram (14) during Game 5 of the Western Conference playoffs.

Deandre Ayton, Chris Paul and Mikal Bridges combined for 72 points as the Suns were without injured Devin Booker for a third straight game in this best-of-7 series.

Bridges scored a career-high playoff 31 in 47 minutes, which is also a career-high playoff, Paul went for 22 while Ayton added 19.

“I’m ready to play tomorrow,” Bridges said about his energy level after Game 5. “I’m teed up, man. I’m energized, my teammates keep me going. You got me itching my knee right now because I’m talking about it. I need to calm down, I need to breathe, but I’m just ready, man. I love being out there, I love playing with my teammates, man.”

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