Bradley Beal came to Phoenix to play in the postseason and compete for a championship. So with an outright berth in the playoffs on the line on Sunday, in the final game of the regular season, it was only fitting that BB put the team on his back.

No. 3 scored 36 points, his second highest scoring total of the season, while connecting on all six of his attempts from three and 14-of-21 from the field overall. He added six rebounds, five assists, a pair of steals and a block to round out yet another complete performance, driving the Suns to a dominant 125-106 win over the Timberwolves in Minnesota.

The victory, combined with a loss by the Pelicans to the Lakers, allowed Phoenix to finish in the sixth spot in the West thanks to a 2-1 advantage head-to-head over New Orleans in the season series. A loss Sunday would have meant the Suns hosting the Lakers on Tuesday in a win-and-in play-in game. Instead, they’ll head home for the week before a return trip to Minnesota, where they’ll begin the first round of the playoffs with Game 1 against the Timberwolves on Saturday.

The game was big. The moment was big. Brad’s performance on Sunday reflected that, as well as just how much he has embraced what’s in front of him as he enters the postseason for the sixth time in his 12-year career.

“[I’m] beyond excited. It’s kind of hard to put into words,” Brad said. “I just embrace every moment. I don’t take a moment for granted or an opportunity for granted. It’s a special group and I want to embrace that. I came here to play in these type of games and I’m fortunate to have that opportunity.”

From the moment the ball was put in the air, tipped by Jusuf Nurkic and corralled by Brad, No. 3 was locked and loaded. He connected on his first three shots, helping the Suns build an early 20-11 lead. After a brief break on the bench midway through the quarter, Brad returned and didn’t miss a beat, knocking down back-to-back threes to make it 38-22 with 90 seconds left in the quarter. He added one more with 13 seconds left in the first, finishing the frame with 16 points on 6-of-7, including 4-of-4 from deep.

After one, the Suns were in complete control, in front by a 44-22 score.

“Just staying aggressive,” Brad said of his hot start. “Everybody’s been on me the last few weeks about being more aggressive, looking at the basket, especially with me playing point more, I kind of like to initiate and get guys going, but a lot of times it’s going to be me looking at the basket and actually being a threat more so than passing out. Once one goes in, I’m good. I’m confident and the rest of the fall. I’m just fortunate I was able to be in good spots.

The second quarter saw Brad get into it a bit with Minnesota’s Anthony Edwards on multiple occasions, leading to technicals being called on both players. As the teams came out after halftime, the players shared a laugh about the situation.

“He’s one of the best scorers and the future of this league,” Brad said after the game. “We’re not going to make it easy on him, but he’s not going to stop being aggressive either. He’s a young, talented player that’s always in attack mode. We’ve got to make sure we’re ready.”

The Timberwolves were able to cut the lead down to 13 at the break and had it down to 10 in the third . But in the fourth quarter, perhaps driven by seeing the Lakers give them the help they needed with a large lead over New Orleans, Phoenix rose to the challenge.

Brad scored 12 more points in the fourth, including two threes that sandwiched around a Grayson Allen bucket as part of a 10-0 Suns run that gave them a 23-point lead and essentially put the game out of reach. A few minutes later, Brad added some free throws and another layup before both teams emptied their benches acknowledging that they would see each other again in six short days.

Phoenix finished the regular season 3-0 against Minnesota, all of them double-digit wins. But Brad knows as well as anyone that everything resets come playoff time, and the Suns have a great challenge in front of them.

“We took care of business in the regular season against them, but this is still a tough team. We know that Ant-man is a lot to deal with, they’re just getting KAT back into their lineup…hopefully it will be an unbelievable series to come,” Brad said. “We still have our hands full. We just control what we control and focus on what we need to do to win.”

Game 1 between the Suns and Timberwolves from Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota is scheduled for Saturday, April 20th. Tip-off time and station is to-be-determined.