Injury Report: Dragic Game-Time Call, Bledsoe Update

by Matt Petersen

The Suns may have to go another game without the services of star guard Goran Dragic, who is recovering from a sprained ankle suffered during Tuesday’s home loss to Minnesota.

Dragic has dealt with a myriad of ankle sprains this season, but had played through most of them until the most recent injury forced him to sit out Wednesday night at Utah. The Slovenian playmaker missed three games in early November, also due to a sprained ankle.

“Every day it’s better and better, but still it’s not a hundred percent,” Dragic said. “I’m worried about that because I need to be 100 percent to play, same as I did the last few games.”

“He goes in there hard a lot and a lot of times he’s stepping on it and twisting it,” Suns Head Coach Jeff Hornacek added. “He said he’s never had this many ankle sprains in a year in his career.”

Dragic will continue aggressive treatment on the ankle leading up to pre-game warmups, when he will test his ability to cut and his overall mobility on the floor.

Ish Smith started in Dragic's place on Wednesday and finished with 13 points, eight rebounds, five assists and two steals. Rookie Archie Goodwin took over backup point guard duties and turned in 16 points, seven rebounds, two steals and one block.

The sixth-year guard is averaging 20.2 points, 6.2 assists, 3.5 rebounds and 1.4 steals per contest.

Bledsoe Progresses

After a series of 2-on-2 and 3-on-3 scrimmages with teammates, Eric Bledsoe took Thursday off for precautionary reasons before resuming more 3-on-3 action on Friday.

He could progress even further before the end of the weekend.

“He feels good and looks good, so we’re going to go down there and do some [3-on-3] and maybe get some [5-on-5] tomorrow,” Hornacek said.

Bledsoe hasn’t played since a Dec. 30 win over the Clippers, when he suffered a knee injury that required arthroscopic surgery on his meniscus.

The fourth-year guard had teamed up with Dragic to form one of the best backcourts in the league while throwing up individual game averages of 18.0 points, 5.8 assists, 4.3 rebounds and 1.5 steals per game.

Barbosa likely, Kravtsov out

Leandro Barbosa, who has missed the last four games due to an injured big toe, is considered likely for tonight’s game according to Hornacek, though he will officially be a game-time decision.

“I think he’ll play, is my guess,” Hornacek said.

Reserve big man Slava Kravtsov (ankle) is out for Friday’s game.