Whereas the win was critical for the Suns and may have saved this season, the performance from Booker was significant for any NBA postseason. Shooting an incredible 80% from the field was truly something to behold. While some players have been perfect from the field in the playoffs, including Chris Paul last season against the Pelicans, the difference is in the volume.
While Paul went 14-of-14 in his stellar performance against the Pelicans – an NBA record – Booker took 25 shots, making 20 on the night, putting him into some rare air.
20 Field Goals in a Playoff game are rare
In the modern era of basketball, since 1984, according to Basketball Reference, a player has made 20 field goals in a playoff game 22 times. Those 22 games have come from 12 players, which Michael Jordan making the list 8 times. Allen Iverson is second with three games of at least 20 FGs made, and Shaquille O’Neal is third, having reached the mark twice.
Four current players are on the list, with Booker, LeBron James, Russell Westbrook, and Stephen Curry, who accomplished the feat less than a week ago. Others on the list are a who’s who of basketball greats, with Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash, Hakeem Olajuwon, and Xavier McDaniel. They are the only players to hit that many buckets in a playoff game.
Booker may have joined a list to create a dozen men who have made 20 or more FGs in a playoff game, but his path to the performance sets him apart.