|Suns survive back-and-forth finish with Raptors|
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By DAVID BRANDT
PHOENIX (AP) Mikal Bridges scored 29 points, Deandre Ayton added 22 points and 13 rebounds and the Phoenix Suns pulled away late to beat the Toronto Raptors 114-106 on Monday night.
The Suns won for the sixth time in seven games despite missing All-Star guard Devin Booker for the entire stretch. Neither team led by more than 10 points in a contest that featured 16 lead changes and five ties.
The Raptors trailed by nine to start the second half but scored 12 straight points in the first 2 1/2 minutes of the third quarter to take a 65-62 lead. Toronto took an 84-82 advantage into the fourth.
The game stayed tight from that point forward until Phoenix pulled away in the final minutes. Chris Paul hit a crucial 3-pointer to push the Suns ahead 106-102 with 1:30 left. Ayton added a tip-in with 51.4 seconds left to extend the advantage to 108-102.
Paul finished with 19 points and nine assists.
Bridges hit a pair of mid-range jumpers late in the fourth to give the Suns a boost. He had one of his best games of the season, shooting 12 of 19 from the field, including 3 of 4 on 3-pointers.
Toronto was led by Fred VanVleet's 24 points and nine assists. Gary Trent Jr. added 21 points while Pascal Siakam had 19.
Bridges scored 23 points on 9 of 12 shooting to push the Suns to a 62-53 halftime lead. Siakam led the Raptors with 12 before the break.
Raptors: G O.G. Anunoby (wrist) and F Otto Porter Jr. (foot) were out. ... Shot just 9 of 33 (27.3%) from 3-point range.
Suns: Guards Devin Booker (groin), Cameron Payne (foot) and Landry Shamet (foot) were out. ... Hosted a 53rd straight sellout crowd. ... Paul hit a 3-pointer at the first quarter buzzer to give the Suns a 32-28 lead. ... Dario Saric added 11 points over 14 minutes off the bench.
Raptors: Travel to face Utah on Wednesday night.
Suns: Host Atlanta on Wednesday night.
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