Not a few NBA fans want the Phoenix Suns to win the 2021 NBA Finals because there aren’t many sweeter moments in sports than seeing an aging veteran in the twilight of his career finally winning his first championship. That Suns veteran would, of course, be Chris Paul, who has done a magnificent job of steering the Suns all the way to the grandest stage of the NBA.
The Milwaukee Bucks, however, are too stubborn to just hand the Larry O’Brien Trophy to Paul and let him kiss it at their own expense. After losing the first two games of the series, the Bucks roared back and won three in a row, putting the Suns in the unenviable position of having to succeed in a must-win game in enemy territory on Tuesday. A loss to the Bucks altogether in this series would mean plenty of things for the Suns, among which can be the perception that Paul is arguably the biggest choker ever in the playoffs.
Via ESPN Stats & Info:
Chris Paul is on the verge of becoming the first player to lose four best-of-7 series in which his team led 2-0. The only other player with three best-of-7 series losses in which his team led 2-0 is former teammate Blake Griffin.
Chris Paul first suffered this fate as a member of the New Orleans Hornets in 2008 when they blew a 2-0 lead against the San Antonio Spurs in the second round. Then with the Los Angeles Clippers, CP3 saw a 2-0 lead in the first round of the 2013 NBA Playoffs evaporate before getting eliminated by the Memphis Grizzlies in six games. There was also the 2016 postseason when the Paul and the Clippers wasted a 2-0 lead against the Portland Trail Blazers, though it should be noted that The Point God suffered a season-ending injury before Game 3 could even be played.
Chris Paul can’t think about all that right now, though. The focus for him is to get the Suns to win two more games, which, if they do, would render all those failures in the past meaningless — at least for the future Hall of Famer.