SUNS AT PELICANS, 8 P.M. ET

  • Phoenix guard Goran Dragic is expected to miss the next two games – on the road tonight at New Orleans and Tuesday in San Antonio – due to re-aggravating a left ankle sprain, initially suffered in the preseason, according to coach Jeff Hornacek. He injured himself during a fastbreak in the third quarter of the Suns’ 103-96 loss at Oklahoma City on Sunday night. Gerald Green is expected start in his place, alongside point guard Eric Bledsoe. “It takes away another threat, because we want to go with those two guys and with them we were really able to get up and down the court,” Hornacek said. “When they try to lock one guy down, we just start going with the other guy.”
  • Hornacek said Dragic’s absence won’t put any more pressure on Bledsoe, but he did encourage the former Clippers’ guard to be more careful with the ball. In three games, Bledsoe has committed 17 turnovers (5.7 per game), including eight in Phoenix’s loss to the Thunder. When asked what more Bledsoe could do to make up for Dragic’s missing offensive production, Hornacek answered, “How about less? As in turnovers. He’s just got to play his game and not force it.”
  • It’s uncertain if rookie forward Alex Len will be able to play tonight. While he’s still experiencing swelling in his left ankle, Hornacek said he will evaluate Len’s status after pregame stretching. Len combined for five points in 21 total minutes during the first two games of the season, prior to sitting out against the Thunder.
  • Sharp-shooting Pelicans’ forward Ryan Anderson is still recovering from toe surgery, but it hasn’t slowed down the team’s efficiency from beyond the arc. New Orleans leads the NBA in 3-point percentage, knocking down 50 percent from the perimeter. However much of that comes from being more conscientious about their attempts, ranking last in the league in 3-pointers shot per game (six).

- Scott Kushner

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