Deandre Ayton injury update: Suns center leaves Cavaliers game with contusion to right leg
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Five games is a very small sample size to draw any conclusions from, but it was a rough start for the defending Western Conference champions the Phoenix Suns.
They started out 1-3 in the first four games, then in their most recent game they beat the visiting Cleveland Cavaliers, but lost starting center Deandre Ayton to an injury to the leg at the end of the match.
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What’s the latest on the 23-year-old’s status? Here are the latest updates on the center.
What is Deandre Ayton’s injury?
The center appeared to have injured his lower right leg. It’s unclear exactly when Ayton was injured, but it was quite noticeable when the 6-foot-11 center was sidelined from the team’s bench in the fourth quarter after being substituted at 4:12 minutes into the third quarter.
In the fourth quarter, the Suns would formalize it. It was a “right leg contusion” and Ayton would not return for the remainder of the game.
Injury update: Deandre Ayton (right leg contusion) will not be returning tonight.
– Phoenix Suns (@Suns) October 31, 2021
In 24 minutes of action against the Cavaliers, he finished with 17 points, 12 rebounds, three steals and a plus-minus high of +30.
How long is Deandre Ayton excluded?
Based on post-game feedback from players and head coach Monty Williams, the injury didn’t look too serious.
Ayton was was reportedly seen walking out of the arena with a slight limp, hitting someone’s knees during the game.
There is no official word on the severity of Ayton’s injury and how long it would keep him out of action.
What is Deandre Ayton’s injury history?
Playing his fourth season, Ayton has proven to be the Suns’ enduring big man.
Aside from a 25-game suspension in the 2019-20 season, when he tested positive for a banned substance, he only missed 24 games in his previous three seasons.
He made a big leap last season, although his seasonal averages don’t tell the full story, as he has proven to be a key cog, especially on the defensive side of the Suns’ road to the 2021 Finals. of his first playoffs, he averaged 15.8 points and 11.8 rebounds in 36.4 minutes with 65.8% shots while playing a remarkable defense over Anthony Davis, league MVP Nikola Jokic and the LA Clippers heavy with small balls.
However, despite his worth and performance, Ayton and the team failed to come to an agreement on a rookie contract extension, the deadline for which was reached ahead of the season on Monday, October 18.
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