Suns Notes: Booker, O’Neale, Nurkic, Beal

Suns guard Devin Booker exited Saturday’s loss to Houston in the fourth quarter after spraining his right ankle, according to reports from Duane Rankin of The Arizona Republic and ESPN.

Booker suffered the injury when he and teammate Royce O’Neale got their feet tangled up on defense while Booker was guarding Rockets guard Fred VanVleet with just over a minute left in the game (Twitter video link). The Suns’ All-Star guard, who was in obvious pain, immediately left the court and headed to the locker room (Twitter video link).

Speaking to reporters after the game, head coach Frank Vogel said that X-rays were negative on Booker’s ankle and that the team doesn’t yet know the severity of the sprain (Twitter video link via Gerald Bourguet of PHNX Sports). The Suns are back in action on Sunday night vs. Oklahoma City, and while it would be a bit of a surprise if Booker is ready to go for that game, Vogel didn’t entirely rule out that possibility.

“We’ll see how he responds overnight,” he said.

Here are a few more injury-related notes out of Phoenix:

  • O’Neale also sustained an ankle injury on the play where he and Booker got tangled up, but his sprain appears to be a mild one. The forward said after the game that he was OK, per Rankin, and Vogel said O’Neale’s injury is “not as much of a concern,” adding that he didn’t get X-rays like Booker did.
  • Suns center Jusuf Nurkic left Saturday’s game in the second quarter and didn’t return after taking an inadvertent shot to the head from teammate Josh Okogie (Twitter link). According to Vogel, Nurkic was tested for a possible concussion, but has been diagnosed with “just a neck sprain.”
  • On the plus side for the Suns, Bradley Beal was back in action on Saturday for the first time since February 13 after missing five games due to a left hamstring issue. However, he was ejected from the game in the third quarter after he picked up a pair of technical fouls in quick succession following a brief altercation with Rockets guard Jalen Green (Twitter video link).
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