NBA: Deandre Ayton out, Jamal Murray good to go in Suns-Nuggets Game 6

Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton will not play in Thursday’s Game 6 of the Western Conference semifinal series against the visiting Denver Nuggets due to a rib contusion.

The Suns announced the decision about two hours before tipoff.

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Also on Thursday, Denver point guard Jamal Murray was added to the injury report as questionable because of a non-COVID illness, but coach Michael Malone said Murray was “good to go” for Game 6 in his pregame press conference. Murray did not participate in the team’s morning shootaround.

Ayton, 24, collided with Nuggets guard Bruce Brown during the Suns’ 118-102 loss on Tuesday. Denver holds a 3-2 lead in the best-of-seven series.

Ayton recorded 14 points and nine rebounds in 32 minutes in Game 5. The top overall pick of the 2018 NBA Draft has averaged 10.8 points and 8.2 boards during the series.

Murray, 26, collected 19 points, six assists and five rebounds in Tuesday’s win for the Nuggets. He is averaging 24.6 points, 7.0 assists and 5.0 rebounds in the series.

Should Phoenix emerge victorious on Thursday, the teams will play a winner-take-all Game 7 on Sunday in Denver.

–Field Level Media

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