Phoenix Suns star Devin Booker suffered a left groin strain, the team announced Wednesday.
He will be re-evaluated in four weeks and will miss at least 15 games in that span.
The guard played four minutes in a loss to the Denver Nuggets on Christmas until he was ruled out. Before that, he missed three consecutive games with the injury.
After the game, head coach Monty Williams spoke to reporters about Booker's return. “He’s getting more evaluation back in Phoenix. He can get the best care back there,” Williams said.
Averaging a career-high 28 points, Booker was playing some of the best basketball of his life.
Two weeks later, Booker dropped 58 points and led the Suns to a comeback win over the rising New Orleans Pelicans.
With his 57th point, he reached a career 12,000 points. Booker is the sixth-youngest player in NBA history to that milestone, trailing only LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant, Carmelo Anthony and Tracy McGrady, according to the Suns.
The Suns (20-15) currently sit at fifth place in the Western Conference and have had their share of injuries along the way.
“Injuries are a part of any NBA season but we’ve probably had more than the norm," Williams said. "We don’t really measure it at all but it seems like we’ve been punched in the gut with it a bit.”
Forward Cam Johnson tore his meniscus in November against the Portland Trailblazers and has been out since. In Johnson and Booker's absence, Deandre Ayton (ankle) and Cameron Payne (foot) both left and were eventually ruled out of the game against the Houston Rockets that became the Suns' fifth straight loss.
Ayton missed two games and was upgraded to available on Dec. 19.
Backup shooting guard Landry Shamet continues to miss time with a right Achilles injury. Additionally, veteran Jae Crowder hasn’t played this season as the Suns' attempts to trade him continue.
Damion Lee and Josh Okogie will likely see more time while Paul, Ayton and Mikal Bridges will be expected to score Booker's missing points.