Suns’ Deandre Ayton, Cam Payne remain out vs. Pelicans

Dec 17, 2022, 1:00 PM
Deandre Ayton #22 of the Phoenix Suns dunks as Jonas Valanciunas #17 and Herbert Jones #5 of the Ne...
Deandre Ayton #22 of the Phoenix Suns dunks as Jonas Valanciunas #17 and Herbert Jones #5 of the New Orleans Pelicans defend during the first half of Game Four of the Western Conference First Round at the Smoothie King Center on April 24, 2022 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)

Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton produced a pair of double-doubles with 25 and 28 points, respectively, in two games against the New Orleans Pelicans last weekend.

The two Western Conference foes will meet up again Saturday night, but this time Ayton will not suit up.

Ayton (left ankle sprain) and guard Cameron Payne (left foot strain) are listed as out on the NBA’s injury report for the second straight game after they each exited Tuesday’s contest against the Houston Rockets.

Wing Cameron Johnson (right meniscus tear) and guard Duane Washington Jr. (left hip strain) also remain on the shelf for Phoenix.

Bismack Biyombo replaced Ayton in the starting lineup Thursday against the Los Angeles Clippers and Jock Landale played the bulk of the minutes at center. Landale produced 15 points and 10 rebounds in a 111-95 victory to snap a five-game skid.

Landale had eight points and seven boards in Phoenix’s last matchup with New Orleans on Sunday and was a plus-12 on the court.

Meanwhile, the Pelicans will miss All-Star forward Brandon Ingram for the 10th consecutive game due to a toe injury.

New Orleans guard Jose Alvarado is probable to suit up after missing a game with a ribs contusion.

The Pelicans got the better of Phoenix at home in their consecutive matchups, although Suns star Devin Booker missed the first outing.

New Orleans forward Zion Williamson had a dominant pair of 35-point performances, and Suns forward Torrey Craig told reporters Saturday that the next round will be a major defensive test.

Catch the game at 7 p.m. on Arizona Sports 98.7, or the Arizona Sports app. 

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