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Game Preview: Suns visit Pistons in Booker, Ishbia’s homecoming for preseason opener

Coach Vogel says the stars will “just get their feet wet”.

Detroit Pistons v Phoenix Suns Photo by Kate Frese/NBAE via Getty Images

What: Phoenix Suns (0-0) @ Detroit Pistons (0-0), preseason opener

When: 12:00 p.m. AZ time

Where: Little Caesars Arena (Detroit, MI)

Watch: 3TV, Arizona’s Family Sports & NBA TV

Listen: 98.7 FM

Finally, after the long summer and NBA off-season, we get to see the Phoenix Suns on the court again. We no longer have to imagine what this new collection of talent will look like next to each other; we’ll get to see it with our own eyes.

To make matters even more fun, this game has a lot of emotional tie-in for each side.

Devin Booker and Mat Ishbia both grew up in Michigan and grew up Pistons fans. Booker calls Rip Hamilton one of his favorite players ever, and the Pistons recently had Ishbia’s UWM mortgage company logo on their jersey. This is definitely a homecoming for the two pillars of the Suns organization.

Meanwhile on the Pistons side, former Suns head coach Monty Williams really landed on his feet getting the Detroit job both financially as well as just from a basketball standpoint. He’s lucky enough to have someone like Cade Cunningham (who reminds me a lot of Booker) running the show, leading and developing under Williams.

The two fit like a glove personality-wise, and Cunningham was extremely impressive in the little time he saw last year before a season-ending injury before dominating at the USA World Cup pre-tournament camp. He wasn’t able to join the team for the Cup run due to injury management, but he’s fully cleared now, and will be the focus of the Suns’ defense.

But what we’ll really all be watching is how these three stars — as well as the new center, Jusuf Nurkic — gel together in a live-game setting for the first time. The aspect I’ll be watching closest is how Booker adjusts to full-time point guard duty (in whatever amorphous form this backcourt takes).

Probable starters:


  • Devin Booker
  • Bradley Beal
  • Josh Okogie
  • Kevin Durant
  • Jusuf Nurkic


  • Cade Cunningham
  • Jaden Ivey
  • release from Pistons listed Bojan Bogdanovic, but he’s a late scratch; Ausar Thompson maybe starts in his place?
  • Isaiah Stewart
  • Jalen Duren

Injury Report:


  • Damion Lee — Out (right meniscus)
  • Jordan Goodwin — Out (right hamstring tightness)
  • Ish Wainright — Out (right calf strain)


  • Bojan Bogdanovic — Out (right calf strain)
  • Isaiah Livers — Out (ankle sprain)

Can’t wait for our first chance to see these three — and this entire team — come together on the hardwood after all these months waiting. Also a great chance to see the new uniforms in live action, as well!

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