Sources: Status of Suns’ Ayton bleak for Game 6

PHOENIX — Suns center Deandre Ayton is receiving around-the-clock treatment on a deep rib contusion that has caused pessimism about his availability for Thursday’s Game 6 against the Denver Nuggets, sources told ESPN.

Ayton is officially listed as questionable for Phoenix’s potential elimination game, and a final decision is not expected to be made until tipoff nears.

Suns point guard Chris Paul will be sidelined for the fourth consecutive game because of a left groin strain.

A source described Ayton as “experiencing significant pain in his ribs and core area,” adding that his breathing is being impacted. The injury generally takes multiple weeks to recover from, the source said.

Ayton has averaged 10.8 points and 8.2 rebounds during the series while matched up with All-NBA center Nikola Jokic, who has averaged 35.8 points, 13.8 rebounds and 10.0 assists to help the Nuggets to a 3-2 series lead.

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