Phoenix Suns wing depth facing further strain after latest injury news

Phoenix Suns, Josh Okogie (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)
Phoenix Suns, Josh Okogie (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) /

With veteran forward Jae Crowder requesting a trade from the Phoenix Suns nearly a week ago, the team could ill-afford further strain on their wing depth heading into preseason.

Unfortunately for the Suns, that’s exactly what’s happened. The beginning of training camp has been littered by constant off-court speculation, but now the franchise faces a genuine on-court issue.

Newly acquired wing Josh Okogie has suffered a left hamstring strain on the eve of the Phoenix Suns first preseason game.

The news was confirmed by Arizona Sports’ Kellan Olson on Friday, with Okogie now limited to light duties before being re-evaluated in two weeks.

It has to be a major frustration for the 24-year-old, having been eager to impress for his new team in preseason. More than that though, Okogie is in a genuine battle to be a regular part of the Suns rotation this season.

This setback now puts him at a distinct disadvantage ahead of Phoenix’s season opener against the Dallas Mavericks on October 20. At media day, Okogie discussed his potential defensive pairing with Mikal Bridges, something that’ll now have to be put on hold for the moment.

"“I looked at him, he looked at me and it was like yep, it’s going to be a long season for opposing offenses…Obviously we have other guys who take defense seriously, but particularly him (Bridges), knowing he does things I might be able to use…It’s cool to be able to have a bond with a guy like that.”"

Okogie’s injury now opens the door for another new Sun, Damion Lee, to earn regular minutes early in the season, while Landry Shamet is expected to have a more concrete role in his second year. It could also lead to early opportunities for Phoenix’s two-way players in Ish Wainright and Duane Washington Jr.

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Phoenix begin their preseason on Sunday with a clash against the Adelaide 36ers of Australia’s NBL.