Chris Paul sets NBA Playoffs record, doesn't miss in 14 field-goal attempts

Phoenix star Chris Paul scores 33 points on 14-for-14 shooting effort to help fuel Phoenix's series-clinching victory over the Pelicans in Game 6.

Phoenix Suns point guard Chris Paul turned in one of the finest performances of an illustrious career on Thursday, setting an NBA Playoffs record while helping the Suns close out the New Orleans Pelicans in their first-round series.

Just eight days shy of his 37th birthday, in a season highlighted by being named a member of the NBA’s 75th Anniversary Team, in a city where his 17-year career began amid the devastating effects of Hurricane Katrina

Chris Paul shot a perfect 14-for-14 from the floor, amassing 33 points, five rebounds and eight assists. He connected on his lone 3-point attempt and additionally nailed all four of his free throws.

“This city raised me, man,” Paul said after the game. “I had no clue. I think maybe at halftime I said I might have to shoot a little more. But throughout the game, I was literally managing the game. I wasn’t taking heat checks. I don’t shoot enough to have heat checks.”

The Suns needed every one of the 14 makes to turn back a feisty challenge by the Pelicans, who ultimately lost on their home floor, 115-109, as Phoenix won the series, 4-2.

Now Paul and the Suns — the team with the best record in the NBA this season — have moved on to the Western Conference semifinals, where a matchup with fourth-seeded Dallas awaits. It’ll start in Phoenix on Monday night (10 ET, TNT).

Paul led Phoenix to victories by scoring 19 points in the fourth quarter of Games 1 and 3 after trying to distribute the ball to teammates in the first three quarters. Suns coach Monty Williams said it was difficult to rank Paul’s achievements as a scorer, leader and game manager.

“I can’t even say because he’s done it so many times,” Williams said. “This is probably No. 1 because it just happened, and I knew how special New Orleans is to him. He cares deeply about the city and the fans and the children. It’s probably No. 1 because it just happened.”

For the season, Paul averaged 14.7 points, 4.4 rebounds, a league-high 10.8 assists and 1.9 steals against only 2.4 turnovers across 65 games. He shot 49.3% from the field, including 31.7% from long range.

Teammate Devin Booker had no problem framing Paul’s performance. “Nobody’s seen this — 14 for 14,” Booker said. “This is the first time for all of us.”

“This was a big-time battle,” Williams said. “You would expect a series like this later on in the playoffs. But I think there’s so much parity in the league now. You can’t walk into a first-round series without keeping your left up. You better keep your left up and duck because teams are throwing punches, right out the gate.”