Phoenix Suns' Big 3 lead second-half surge to beat Cleveland Cavaliers in Devin Booker's return

The Phoenix Suns (38-27) had a balanced attack from their Big 3 to win, 117-111, at the Cleveland Cavaliers (41-24) on Monday.

Phoenix bounced back from Saturday's home loss to Boston. Cleveland is on a two-game skid.

Kevin Durant had a game-high 37 points and six assists, Devin Booker had 27 and a team-high seven assists in his return, and Bradley Beal had 24 and a team-high three steals. They led the Suns' second-half surge to take control, after they trailed by as much as 19 near halftime. The Suns held the scoring advantage shortly after the third quarter's midpoint.

Cleveland's Darius Garland led his team with 30 points after his 21-point start in the first quarter, and Caris LeVert had 17 and a game-high 11 assists in the loss.

Four each among Phoenix's and Cleveland's starters scored in double figures, and the Suns edged the Cavaliers in the final minute.

The Suns play the second of their four-game road trip at the Boston Celtics, the first of Phoenix's back-to-back games, on Thursday at 4 p.m.

Game takeaways: Booker, Durant, Beal too much for Cavaliers in Suns win

Suns rise behind Durant in 3rd quarter

Kevin Durant had the piping hot hand in the third, scoring 19 of his 32 points as Phoenix took its first lead in the quarter and led 97-91, entering the final period.

The Suns went on an 18-3 surge from early in the third quarter and past its midpoint to upend the score for both the team's first lead of the game, and Phoenix’s biggest advantage by nine in the process.

Durant (4-of-8 from the 3) hit his second three at the 4:41 mark.

Phoenix heats up in 2nd quarter to stay close

A 17-3 run late in the 1st quarter helped Phoenix close the gap after Cleveland extended its lead in the 2nd quarter but the Cavs went into the break leading 70-63.

The Suns were down by as much as 19 points in the first half, but cut into that lead with that run as Phoenix appeared to pick up the pace in the 2nd quarter.

The Suns Big 3 all were in double figures after two quarters, as Bradley Beal began heating up in the quarter, totaling 16 points in the half. He went 7 of 12 from the field, including 2 of 4 from behind the arc.

Devin Booker added 15 points and Kevin Durant 13 for Phoenix at the half.

Cleveland’s offense continued finding ways to score to stay ahead. Darius Garland ended the half with 25 points, after scoring 21 in the first quarter. Chris LeVert added 10 for the Cavs, and  Georges Niang  8 points.

The  Cavs also got seven points each from Damian Jones and Craig Porter Jr. off the bench.

Garland's hot start drives Cavs in 1st quarter

Cleveland’s offense got off to a hot start in building a 41-32 lead after the 1st quarter behind the hot shooting of point guard Darius Garland, who scored 21 points in the quarter.

Garland’s total included hitting 5 of 6 3-point shots for the Cavs, who shot 7 of 12 from behind the arc in the quarter and just under 67 percent from the field.

Phoenix was led by Kevin Durant’s 9 points, going 4-of-9 from the field, including 1 of 2 3-point shots. Devin Booker and Bradley Beal each added points and Grayson Allen 6 points both on 3-point shots, keeping the Suns within reach.

Starting lineups

Devin Booker's return is official. He's listed as a starter alongside Bradley Beal in the backcourt for Phoenix, with Grayson Allen and Kevin Durant at the forward spots and Jusuf Nurkic at center.

Cleveland will start Darius Garland and Chris LeVert in the backcourt, with Isaac Okoro and Georges Niang at the forward spots and Jarrett Allen in the middle.

Injury reports: Booker available to return; Cavs' Mitchell out

Devin Booker (right ankle sprain) was listed as available for Monday's game, according to a report from The Republic's Duane Rankin. He missed the past four Suns games with a right ankle sprain. Phoenix's second-leading scorer behind Kevin Durant has been out for 14 games this season from several injuries. If Booker misses over three more games before the playoffs, he could risk ineligibility for year-end NBA honors, per the league's collective bargaining agreement's 65-game threshold.

Additional Suns players on the pregame injury report include Eric Gordon (left knee contusion), Nassir Little (left knee inflammation), Josh Okogie (lower abdominal strain), and Damion Lee (right meniscus surgery), who are all out.

The Cavaliers will be without their five-time All-Star and leading scorer Donovan Mitchell (left knee bone bruise). Other players out for Cleveland include one of the team's top bigs in Evan Mobley (left ankle sprain), Max Strus (right knee strain), Tristan Thompson (league suspension), Dean Wade (personal reasons), and Ty Jerome (right ankle surgery)

This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: Suns' Big 3 lead second-half surge to beat Cavaliers in Booker's return