The Phoenix Suns are set to take on the Charlotte Hornets on Saturday night, but they will be doing so without their star rookie Deandre Ayton. The 7-foot center was ruled out due to a non-COVID related illness and will miss the matchup.
Ayton has been a key contributor for the Suns this season, averaging 18.4 points, 12.4 rebounds and 1.4 blocks per game. He has also developed a strong chemistry with star guard Devin Booker, leading to the Suns’ newfound success this season.
The Suns will now be forced to make do without Ayton, and they will likely turn to veteran big man Frank Kaminsky to fill in the gap. Kaminsky started the season as an afterthought, but he has proven to be a reliable contributor off the bench and will now get the opportunity to prove his worth as a starter.
The Hornets will be looking to take advantage of Ayton’s absence and pick up a win on the road. The Hornets have been up and down this season, but they have shown flashes of brilliance and will be looking to take advantage of the weakened Suns.
It is unclear how long Ayton will be out, but the Suns will need him back as soon as possible if they want to stay in the hunt for a playoff spot. They are currently in 9th place in the Western Conference and have some tough opponents coming up on their schedule.