Devin Booker scored 27 points to lead the Phoenix Suns past the Dallas Mavericks 128-102 on Thursday (US time) to keep alive their suddenly faint hopes of extending their season.
Phoenix has done just about everything it can to put itself in position for a spot in the Western Conference play-in game scheduled this weekend.
The Suns are 8-0 now, the only undefeated team in the NBA's bubble, but that perfect showing may not mean anything if the result of the Portland-Brooklyn game later in the day doesn't go their way.
Owing to a tiebreaker with Phoenix, Memphis advanced to the play-in after the Grizzlies beat Milwaukee.
Phoenix's season now rests on Portland losing to Brooklyn.
Dario Saric and Cameron Payne contributed 16 and 15 points, respectively, off the bench for the Suns, who went on a 31-point explosion in a span of 7:30 in the second quarter to turn the game into a rout.
Boban Marjanovic tallied 18 points and 10 rebounds for Dallas, which played Luka Doncic sparingly and missed Kristaps Porzingis (heel).
Dallas will face the Los Angeles Clippers in the West first round.
San Antonio, a fourth team that was eyeing to reach the playoffs, was eliminated after the victories by Memphis and Phoenix.
The 8th- and 9th-place finishers in the West will battle this weekend in a 1- or 2-game play-in series on Saturday and, if necessary, Sunday.
The 8th-place finisher must win only one game, while the 9th-place finisher must win both. The winner of the play-in will face the top-seeded Los Angeles Lakers in the traditional first round of the playoffs.
— With a report from Field Level Media
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