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Triano: Devin Booker’s return from rib injury about pain management

Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker picks up his shoe during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Houston Rockets, Sunday, Jan. 28, 2018, in Houston. (AP Photo/Eric Christian Smith)
LISTEN: Jay Triano, Suns Interim Head Coach

Devin Booker received good news during the Phoenix Suns’ Monday night loss to the Grizzlies. An X-ray taken at the game in Memphis revealed there were no fractures to his ribs, and while he missed the 120-109 defeat, he’s expected to return in short order provided he can play through the pain.

“There was no way he could play last night,” Suns interim coach Jay Triano told Doug & Wolf on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station Tuesday.

Triano said Booker injured himself by falling on his elbow and punching it into his ribs.

“I think it’s just going to be how tender those ribs are and how fast he can respond,” the coach added. “He got treatment throughout the game last night. He’ll get treatment again today and hopefully we’ll see what happens and how much he’s able to recover before we play against tomorrow night.”

The Suns host the Dallas Mavericks at 8:30 p.m. Wednesday in a game that will be televised on ESPN and air on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station. 

Phoenix hopes that Booker’s not the only player they have returning to action.

Heading into the Monday game at Memphis, Phoenix listed Booker (ribs), Marquese Chriss (left ankle sprain), Troy Daniels (low back strain) and Alex Len (right ankle soreness) as questionable. Daniels and Len played, while Chriss sat out against the Grizzlies.

Chriss had missed six full games due to an ailing hip before he sprained his ankle in his second game back. The Memphis loss was his first game on the sidelines due to the ankle injury.

The Suns have now lost eight of their last nine games.

“The injury bug has hit us, that’s for sure,” Triano said before adding it’s an opportunity to teach his young team a few lessons about working through an 82-game schedule.

The Suns coach pointed to Houston Rockets veteran point guard Chris Paul, who has been playing through a groin injury.

“You could see his groin was sore. Defensively, he was switching off on whoever he thought he could guard on our team, on multiple positions, just because he knew he couldn’t move laterally well enough,” Triano said. “I said after the game to one of the coaches, that’s exactly what a veteran guy does.”

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