The Pelicans never cease to amaze! With his team trailing by two points at the break, Brandon Ingram put on a third-quarter fest to put his team in control, before Jonas Valanciunas, Herb Jones and Jose Alvarado inflicted an 18- 4 to the Suns in the final quarter to put the best team in the regular season on the ropes. Chris Paul got through this time for Phoenix who continues to seek his address (7/27 from 3-pointers, after 4/26 of Game 3).
In the wake of a new aggressive Deandre Ayton and author of 10 points in the first quarter, the Suns had started strong. Their lack of external address, however, allows the duo Brandon Ingram – Jonas Valanciunas, author of 20 of the 25 points of his team, to place the Pelicans in the lead (25-22). CJ McCollum’s awakening pushes the New Orleans lead to +8 but the Suns come back to the charge. Their defense goes up a notch and the return of their outside address thanks to Cameron Johnson and Jae Crowder gives them the advantage at halftime (51-49).
In the wake of Brandon Ingram, Willie Green’s men started the third quarter with a 14-6 to regain control of the game (63-57). Despite four fouls for Cam Johnson and Jae Crowder, and a discreet Chris Paul, the Suns cling behind JaVale McGee, Cameron Payne, or even Torrey Craig but Ingram’s 16 points increase the gap to +10 in a Smoothie King Center boiling (84-74).
So at 2 of 6 on shots, Chris Paul delivers four assists in the first four minutes of the last quarter. The Suns return to -5 and while the momentum seems to change sides, seven straight points from Jonas Valanciunas and a defensive festival from Herb Jones and Jose Alvarado launch an 18-4 in the next five minutes (107-89)! Under the ovation of their public, the Pelicans therefore win Game 4 with authority and will go to Phoenix on Tuesday with full confidence.
WHAT YOU MUST REMEMBER
– Jonas Valanciunas holds out on DeAndre Ayton. Dominated by the pivot of the Suns during Game 3, the Lithuanian responded to the aggressiveness of his vis-à-vis at the start of Game 4 to help his team take the advantage. If the Pelicans again struggled to slow down Ayton, Valanciunas this time was much more active on the other side of the field, attacking his direct opponent successfully and putting pressure on the rebound. Clumsy McCollum, Valanciunas responded to come and support Brandon Ingram.
– The Pelicans still dominate the 3rd quarter. The Pelicans have won every third quarter of this series (Game 1: +11, Game 2: +12, Game 3: +9), and that trend continued tonight. In the wake of an unstoppable Brandon Ingram, they again won the third period by twelve points (35-23), limiting their opponent to 8 of 20 on shots to take a ten-point lead and put the Suns back against the wall. .
– Chris Paul and the Suns sink late in the game. Best team in the league this season in the last quarter, the Suns lost their cool against the surging Pelicans. Thanks to four assists from Chris Paul, Phoenix had returned to -4 but the trio Valanciunas – Jones – Alvarado took matters into their own hands. The pivot scored seven straight points by dominating Deandre Ayton. Herb Jones blocked two 3-point shots and forced a flagrant foul from Chris Paul after an interception, and Jose Alvarado frustrated CP3 by causing an 8-second violation and stealing the ball from him like only he knows how to do. Thanks to this trio, the Pelicans passed an 18-4 to their opponent to finish this Game 4 with style.
✅ Brandon Ingram. The Pelicans star has had a third straight 30-point or better in this series. He scored 16 of his 30 units in the third quarter to allow his team to make the difference.
✅ Jonas Valanciunas. Ridiculed by Ayton during Game 3, the Lithuanian pivot responded by beating his record for points in a playoff game (26) and grabbing 15 rebounds!
✅Herb Jones-Jose Alvarado. The two rookies were the X factors of the meeting. If Jones scored 13 points, it was thanks to their defense and their intensity that the two players left their mark on the match, especially in the second half.
✅ DeAndre Ayton. The Suns pivot confirmed his good Game 3 by finishing Game 4 as the best scorer (23) and rebounder (8) on his team.
⛔ ChrisPaul. Masterful in the first three games, CP3 got through this night. He only scored 4 points on 2 of 8 on shots (his lowest points total in the playoffs), and he remained silent in the last quarter. He still delivered 11 assists but lost his temper late in the game against Alvarado and Jones.
⛔ Jae Crowder – Cam Johnson – Mikal Bridges. The three starting wingers finished the game at 11 of 30 on shots, including 4 of 12 from 3-point range. They also couldn’t do anything to slow Ingram down. The Suns will need their contribution to react during Game 5.
Game 5 : in the night from Tuesday to Wednesday, at 03:00.