On October 28, 2017, Booker scored 34 points in a 114–107 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers for his 21st career 30+ point game, setting the third-most 30-point games in NBA history before turning 21 years old, behind LeBron James (57) and Kevin Durant (28). On November 6, he scored 18 points in a 98–92 loss to the Brooklyn Nets to reach 3,000 career points and the fourth-youngest player in NBA history to score 3,000 points, behind LeBron James, Kevin Durant, and Carmelo Anthony. On November 13, a 36-point game and 26th 30-point in his career tied Steve Nash for 15th most in franchise history. Over the Suns' first 17 games of the season, Booker had seven 30-point games. In Suns history, only Charlie Scott (8 in 1974–75) has had more 30-point performances in the same span.
In the Laurel MLK Shootout, Booker scored 54 points against Northeast Jones High School, falling nine shy of Litterial Green's Moss Point record for most points in a game, set in 1988. He followed up that performance with 32 points, including a game-winning three-pointer, against Murrah High School and was named ESPNHS.com's Southeast Player of the Week. At that time, his father told reporters that Booker was drawing interest from Mississippi State, Ole Miss, Florida, Alabama, Georgetown, Michigan and Missouri.
On March 24 against the Boston Celtics, Booker became the sixth player in NBA history to score 70 points in a game, joining Wilt Chamberlain, David Robinson, David Thompson, Elgin Baylor and Kobe Bryant. It was the 11th 70-point game in NBA history. Booker finished 21-of-40 shooting overall, including 4-of-11 on 3-pointers, and 24-of-26 from the free throw line. He added eight rebounds and six assists in 45 minutes. Booker, 20, became the youngest player to score 70 (and 60) points in a game. He had the highest-scoring game in the NBA since Bryant scored 81 in January 2006. The Suns' previous scoring record was held by Tom Chambers with 60 points on March 24, 1990. With 21 points against Dallas on April 9, Booker passed Kobe Bryant to move into fourth place on the NBA scoring list of players before their 21st birthday with 2,774 points, trailing only Carmelo Anthony, Kevin Durant, and leader LeBron James. Booker ended the season averaging 22.1 points per game, a near 9-point increment from his 13.8 points in 2015–16.
Devin Armani Booker (born October 30, 1996) is an American professional basketball player for the Phoenix Suns of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He is the son of former basketball player Melvin Booker. After playing college basketball for one season with the Kentucky Wildcats, Booker was selected by the Phoenix Suns in the first round of the 2015 NBA draft with the 13th overall pick. On March 24, 2017, he became the youngest player to score over 60 points in a game, finishing with 70 against the Boston Celtics. In March 2019, at 22 years old, Booker became the youngest player in NBA history with consecutive 50-point games. Booker received his first two NBA All-Star selections in 2020 and 2021 as a replacement player.
On January 12, 2017, he scored 28 fourth-quarter points, in another 39-point night, to set the Suns franchise record for most points in a quarter previously held by Stephon Marbury's 26 points in 2002. He had a second straight 39-point effort in a two days later to become the youngest player in NBA history to record consecutive games of 39 or more points in the regular season. He was named to the U.S. Team for the 2017 Rising Stars Challenge, and was invited to take part in the 2017 Taco Bell Skills Challenge. On February 4, at 20 years, 97 days old, Booker became the youngest player to score at least 20 points in 16 consecutive games. His 16-game streak is the second-longest by any first-year or second-year player since Vince Carter had a 23-game run as a second-year player during the 1999–2000 season.
On March 3, Booker scored a then career-high 34 points in a loss to the Miami Heat, becoming the first Suns rookie since Richard Dumas in the 1992–93 season to record multiple 30+ point games for the team and the fourth-youngest player to do it in a season. His third 30-point game came on March 9 against the New York Knicks, finishing with 32 points to join Walter Davis (17) and Alvan Adams (6) as the only Suns rookies with 3+ 30-point games. A day later, Booker recorded his second-straight 30+ point game (third in a week and fourth overall at the time) by setting a new career-high with 35 points in a loss to the Denver Nuggets, joining LeBron James as the only teenagers in NBA history with back-to-back 30+ point games. On March 12, he recorded his third double-double of the season with 18 points and a career-high 11 assists in a 123–116 loss to the Golden State Warriors, becoming the first Suns rookie with multiple points/assists double-doubles since Negele Knight (3) in the 1990–91 season. He recorded his fifth 30-point game of the season on March 28 against the Minnesota Timberwolves. Throughout the month of March, Booker led all rookies in points (22.4) and assists (4.9) per game. His sixth and final 30-point game of the season came on April 5 in a loss to the Atlanta Hawks, scoring 34 points on 12-of-25 shooting. On April 9, with 16 points scored in a 121–100 win over the New Orleans Pelicans, Booker reached 1,014 for the season, making him the fourth-youngest player to reach 1,000 career points, following only LeBron James, Kevin Durant, and Kobe Bryant, as well as the third-youngest during their rookie season. Booker finished his rookie campaign with 1,048 points at an average of 13.8 per game. He appeared in 76 of the team's 82 games in 2015–16, a season that saw the Suns finish with the second-worst record in the West (23–59) and the second-worst record in franchise history. In addition, Booker made 51 starts and averaged 2.5 rebounds and 2.6 assists per game, earning praise from fellow NBA players such as Klay Thompson, Dwyane Wade, and Kobe Bryant. He finished fourth in the 2016 NBA Rookie of the Year Award voting and earned NBA All-Rookie First Team honors. He became the first Suns player to be named as a member of the All-Rookie Team since Amar'e Stoudemire in 2003.
On February 24, for the second year in a row, he was named an All-Star as an injury replacement, this time to Anthony Davis. He and Chris Paul became the first Suns duo since Steve Nash and Amar'e Stoudemire in 2010 to be named All-Stars. The duo would also help Phoenix clinch their first playoff berth since 2010.
After playing for the freshman, junior varsity and varsity basketball teams during his freshman year at Grandville High School in Michigan, Booker moved to Mississippi to live with his father after the latter's retirement from professional basketball. He enrolled at Moss Point High School, where his father was hired as an assistant coach, in August 2011. In his team's fifth game of the season—a 52–32 loss to Gulfport High School—Booker scored more points (17) than the rest of his teammates combined (15). In December, he hit a buzzer beater from just beyond half court to beat Harrison Central High School, improving Moss Point's record to 4–6 on the year. By early January, Press-Register sportswriter Creg Stephenson opined, "Sophomore guard Devin Booker has developed into one of the top players on the coast in his first season with the [Moss Point] Tigers' varsity, averaging 22.7 points per game."
During the summer of 2013, Booker participated in the Kevin Durant Skills Academy, the LeBron James Skills Academy, the CP3 Elite Guard Camp, and the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) Top 100 camp. His fellow participants in the NBPA camp voted him to the camp's 10-man all-star team. Booker also participated against international competition at the Nike Global Challenge. At the Under Armor Elite 24 showcase, he won the three-point shooting contest. In August 2013, Booker narrowed his list of potential college choices to Florida, Missouri, Michigan, Michigan State, and Kentucky. He took an official visit to the University of Kentucky on the weekend of September 9 to watch an alumni exhibition game; fellow 2014 prospects Jahlil Okafor and Tyler Ulis also attended.
In 38 games for Kentucky in 2014–15, Booker averaged 10.0 points, 2.0 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 21.5 minutes per game. He subsequently earned SEC Sixth Man of the Year honors and was named to the SEC All-Freshman Team and the All-SEC Second Team.
On January 22, 2021, Booker reached 8,000 points scored in a 130–126 overtime loss to the Denver Nuggets, straining his left hamstring during that overtime. He returned to action on February 1, reaching 700 career three-point shots, including a game-winning 3-pointer with 1.5 seconds left in the game, to win 109–108 over the Dallas Mavericks. Two days later, Booker passed Dan Majerle for 10th place in the Suns all-time scoring list in a 123–101 loss to the New Orleans Pelicans. On February 7, Booker was near another first-ever triple-double performance with 18 points, a season-high 11 assists, and 7 rebounds in a 100–91 win over the Boston Celtics. The next day, Booker scored a season-high 36 points in a 119–113 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers. He later matched his season-high for points on February 13 in a 120–111 win over the Philadelphia 76ers. Booker was then named the Western Conference Player of the Week for the first time in his career on February 15 for the week of February 8–14, 2021. In that week, he averaged 32.8 points on 56.3% field goal shooting, 47.6% three-point shooting, and 80.8% free-throw shooting, as well as 5.3 assists and 5.0 rebounds per game in four home games played in that time, winning all four home games in the process and being the first Suns player to get the award since Goran Dragić in 2014.
In Kentucky's first exhibition game against the University of Pikeville on November 2, 2014, Booker was the team's second leading scorer with 16 points on 6-of-9 shooting, including two three-pointers; he also had three assists.
On April 9, 2015, Booker declared for the NBA draft, forgoing his final three years of college eligibility. He was joined by fellow Kentucky teammates Andrew Harrison, Aaron Harrison, Dakari Johnson, Willie Cauley-Stein, Trey Lyles and Karl-Anthony Towns.
On June 25, 2015, Booker was selected with the thirteenth overall pick by the Phoenix Suns in the 2015 NBA draft. On July 13, he signed his rookie scale contract with the Suns, and in seven subsequent Summer League games, he averaged 15.3 points, 4.9 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game. He went on to make his NBA debut two days before his 19th birthday, in the Suns' season opener against the Dallas Mavericks. He became the first player in NBA history to debut at 18 years old after playing at least one year of college basketball. In 21 minutes of action against the Mavericks, he scored 14 points on 6-of-7 shooting in a 111–95 loss. While he began the season as a backup shooting guard throughout the early portion of the season, including starts on November 23 and December 21, a late December injury to starting guard Eric Bledsoe on December 26 led to Booker's promotion to the starting line-up for the rest of the season. Before his teammate's injury, Booker was producing averages of 5.4 points, 0.9 rebounds, and 0.8 assists in 14.1 minutes of play. His production then increased throughout the second half of the season.
During the offseason, Booker trained with head coach Earl Watson and former NBA player Baron Davis at UCLA, was invited to be on the select team that practices against Team USA in preparation for the Summer Olympics, and played two games for the Suns during the Las Vegas Summer League. With teammate Eric Bledsoe returning from injury in 2016–17, Booker was retained as the starting shooting guard while Brandon Knight was moved to the bench. In the Suns' season opener on October 26, Booker scored 18 points on 8-of-12 shooting in a 113–94 loss to the Sacramento Kings. Booker played alongside rookies Marquese Chriss and Dragan Bender and the Suns became the first NBA team to play three teenagers in the same game. Booker scored a career-highs of 38 points and 39 points on November 4 and 6, becoming the first Suns player to record consecutive games of 38 or more points in the regular season since Tom Chambers 28 years earlier.
On January 2, 2016, Booker scored a then season-high 21 points in a 142–119 loss to the Sacramento Kings. Only Kobe Bryant, Tracy McGrady, LeBron James, Dwight Howard, and Kevin Durant scored 20+ points more than once at a younger age than Booker. He became the youngest Phoenix Suns player and the fifth-youngest player in NBA history to record a double-double behind LeBron James, Andrew Bynum, Giannis Antetokounmpo, and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist on January 6. On January 19, he scored 32 points in a 97–94 loss to the Indiana Pacers, setting a Suns' rookie record with six three-pointers. Booker became the third-youngest player in NBA history at 19 years, 81 days old to record a 30-point game, behind LeBron James and Kevin Durant, as well as the youngest Suns player to score 30 or more points in a game. On February 12, Booker scored 23 points in a close victory for Team USA in the 2016 Rising Stars Challenge. The following day, he competed in the NBA All-Star Weekend's Three-Point Contest, becoming the youngest contestant to ever participate in the event and only the fourth rookie to compete in the 30-year-old contest, joining Stephen Curry (2010), Kyle Korver (2004) and Dennis Scott (1991). He made it to the final round of the event, beating both James Harden and JJ Redick in a tiebreaker event after the first round, where he finished third behind the "Splash Brothers" – Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson (winner).
On September 10, he was ruled out for six weeks after undergoing surgery to repair the fifth metacarpophalangeal joint in his right hand after he jammed it in practice on March 14, 2018. He recovered in time for the Suns' season opener on October 17, scoring 35 points in a 121–100 victory over the Dallas Mavericks. Throughout the beginning of the season, he had multiple 30+ point games despite missing a six-game stretch when he strained his hamstring. On January 24, Booker became the fifth youngest player in NBA history to reach 5,000 career points, behind LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony, and Dwight Howard.
On July 7, 2018, Booker signed a five-year, $158 million maximum contract extension with the Suns.
On November 23, 2019, Booker almost put up a triple-double with 35 points, a career-high 12 rebounds, and 9 assists in a 100–98 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves. From December 27, 2019 until January 7, 2020, Booker scored over 30 points in seven straight games, including a 40-point performance in a loss against the Memphis Grizzlies on January 5. This streak broke a franchise record for most consecutive 30+ point games in a row, beating a record previously set by Charlie Scott twice and Charles Barkley once. In addition, his streak from December 28 until January 7 made him the only player since the 1983–84 NBA season to record six straight performances of 30+ points and 6+ assists with 47% shooting efficiency. On January 28, Booker became the fourth-youngest player to reach 7,000 career points, behind only LeBron James, Kevin Durant, and Carmelo Anthony. Booker was named an All-Star on February 13, 2020 as an injury replacement after Damian Lillard suffered an groin strain injury a day earlier. He also replaced Lillard in the Three Point Contest, an event he had previously won, and finished as the runner-up behind Buddy Hield.
Booker's maternal grandfather is from Mexico. Devin is the only child of his father, Melvin Booker, a former professional basketball player. In 2020, Booker was named a global ambassador to the Special Olympics for his support for his younger half-sister who has microdeletion syndrome, a genetic chromosomal disorder.
Due to his mother's ethnic background, Booker drew interest from the Mexican and U.S. national teams. He played on the 2016 USA Select Team that trained against the 2016 U.S. Olympic team. In February 2020, he was named a finalist to play on the 2020 United States men's Olympic basketball team. However, the 2020 Summer Olympics were postponed into 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the 2020 NBA Bubble, Booker helped the Suns reached an 8–0 record as of August 11, 2020, holding an 8-game winning streak for the first time since the 2009–10 season. On August 4, Booker hit a fade-away game-winning jumper at the buzzer over Paul George and Kawhi Leonard to lift the Suns to a 117–115 win over the Los Angeles Clippers and bring their record there to 3–0 at the time. On August 11, he scored 35 points, breaking a franchise record set by Walter Davis for the most games of 30+ points scored with the team, as well as get 9 rebounds and 7 assists in a 130–117 win over the Philadelphia 76ers. During his time in the NBA Bubble, Booker was named a nominee for the Seeding Games MVP award (earned for the best overall performance in the NBA's resumed regular season games), as well as earned a spot for one of the All-Seeding Games Teams, averaging 31 points per game during these games.