Update, April 28: Booker is available after going through the pregame warmup, and is expected to have a minutes restriction as he continues to recover from the hamstring strain. This is somewhat ahead of the original 2-3 week timetable for Booker’s return, so the Suns are being rightfully cautious with the star shooting guard.
Update, April 28: After initially listing Booker as out, the Suns are thinking the guard is expected to play in Game 6 against the Pelicans assuming the pregame warmup goes well.
ESPN Sources: Phoenix Suns All-Star G Devin Booker (strained hamstring) is expected to play vs. New Orleans in Game 6 tonight. Booker is expected to test the ligament in pregame warmups, and assuming all goes well, he’ll be back on the floor after missing the past three games.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) April 28, 2022
Update, April 28: There was some noise of Booker possibly suiting up for Thursday’s Game 6 against the Pelicans, but the team is officially listing him out for now. The guard can always be upgraded closer to game time but now he’s not likely to suit up in New Orleans.
Update, April 21: It’s bad news for the Suns regarding Booker. According to Brian Windhorst and Adrian Wojnarowski, Booker could miss 2-3 weeks with his hamstring strain. That definitely takes him out of the rest of the first round series against the Pelicans and could put the start of the second round in jeopardy assuming Phoenix advances to that stage.
Update, April 20: Booker is dealing with a mild hamstring strain that has his status for the rest of the first round vs. the Pelicans in question, per Adrian Wojnarowski.
There's still an evaluation ongoing on MRI results of Phoenix Suns All-Star Devin Booker's right hamstring, but it appears unlikely he will be able to play in Games 3 and 4 in New Orleans, sources tell ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) April 20, 2022
The Suns are going to continue to look at Booker and give him treatment. For now, it isn’t looking good for Booker to play in the next two games, per Woj. Things can change and we’ll see what kind of injury designation Booker receives for Game 3 on Friday night. Woj added that Booker hasn’t been ruled out of the rest of the series just yet.
Update: Booker has officially been ruled out for the rest of the contest. The Suns lead the Pelicans 96-95 in the fourth quarter with about eight minutes left. It’ll be up to Chris Paul, Mikal Bridges and Deandre Ayton to carry the Suns with Booker sidelined. He’ll finish the game with 31 points, one assist and two rebounds.
Official: Devin Booker (right hamstring tightness). Will not return tonight. #Suns— Duane Rankin (@DuaneRankin) April 20, 2022
Update: Booker is back on the bench but we’ll see if he eventually checks back into the game. Head coach Monty Williams later confirmed Booker is dealing with a hamstring injury and the team will know more after the game. It seems unlikely Booker will return to this game, even though he’s been on fire and the Suns need him down the stretch of a close contest. We’ll see how this plays out.
Devin Booker's back on the bench but wearing his warmups.— David Brandt (@davidbrandtAP) April 20, 2022
Devin Booker has headed to the locker room. pic.twitter.com/xRpwQux6ZS— Bally Sports Arizona (@BALLYSPORTSAZ) April 20, 2022
This is a bad development for the Suns if Booker has a serious injury. The shooting guard has been on fire in Game 2, with 31 points on 12-19 shooting. Booker was particularly hot in the first half before cooling off in the third quarter. We’ll see if he’s able to return for this game.
If Booker is unable to come back, look for the Suns to ride with Landry Shamet, Cameron Johnson, Jae Crowder, Mikal Bridges and Chris Paul in the backcourt in some fashion. Cameron Payne may also get some spot minutes, but the Suns are in a tight game and it’s hard to see them straying from their key guys.