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Suns’ Chris Paul officially out for Game 6, Ayton questionable, Booker doing ‘OK’

With other teams struggling and Nikola Jokic thriving, the Nuggets look like a solid bet for the NBA championship.

The Suns will have to save their season Thursday night without Chris Paul.

The future Hall of Fame point guard has officially been listed as “out” for Game 6 due to a groin strain suffered earlier in the series.

While that hurts the Suns already shallow depth (Cameron Payne has not impacted games), it has put the playmaking in the hands of Devin Booker, who has been the MVP of the Western Conference Playoffs so far, averaging 34.6 points a game this series while shooting 57.1% from 3 and dishing out 7.8 assists a night. As Nuggets coach Michael Malone noted, the Suns play a couple of possessions faster a game with Booker at the point than they do the deliberate CP3.

Booker seemed to tweak his foot in Game 5 when Jeff Green fouled him on a fast break, however he stayed in the game and played through it. Booker is not on the injury report, went through the team’s light off-day practice, and coach Monty Williams said he was “OK.”

Ayton was injured in the ribs after a blow from the Nuggets Bruce Brown but it would be a surprise not to see him on the court for Game 6.

The Nuggets lead the series 3-2 after a convincing Game 5 win at home. Expect desperate play from Booker and Kevin Durant in Game 6, whether that will be enough against a Nuggets team that has found its groove remains to be seen.