Deandre Ayton is probable to make his return to the Phoenix Suns lineup on Monday against the Utah Jazz, per Shams Charania.
Ayton has missed the last four games with a right hip contusion, an injury he sustained in a win over the Orlando Magic on March 16. In his absence, the Suns have won just a solitary game during what is a pivotal stretch for them in the lead-up to the playoffs.
With their starting center unavailable, Phoenix have had an increased reliance on Bismack Biyombo. While he is a reliable back-up and had a strong game in the Suns’ recent win over the Philadelphia 76ers with 17 points, 13 rebounds and five blocks, his output is clearly significantly below what Ayton would provide and he has failed to score more than seven points in any of his other three outings since moving into the starting lineup.
Ayton is having another consistent year in a young career which is fast becoming known primarily for exactly that. In 61 games to date this season, the number one pick from the 2018 draft is averaging 18.3 points on 58.9% shooting to go with 10.1 rebounds, all very similar numbers to what he has averaged in each of his five seasons in the league.
His return will mark the second last piece of the puzzle for a Suns team which, when fully fit, might be the most talented in the league. They currently sit in fourth in the Western Conference but there are a host of teams right on their heels, and they need a few more wins to ensure a playoff spot which will enable them to have a tilt at the title with, hopefully, all of Devin Booker, Chris Paul, Deandre Ayton and of course Kevin Durant on the floor. Ayton’s return should make that task a little bit easier.
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