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Two of Suns’ Big 3 OUT vs. Lakers

Kevin Durant and LeBron James will play against each other for the first time since 2018. © Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Despite an indication yesterday by Suns’ coach Frank Vogel that we would see the full team play in tonight’s final preseason game vs. the Lakers, that will not be the case.

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Devin Booker (rest) and Bradley Beal (back) will miss tonight’s game. However, Kevin Durant will play.

“I talked to each one of them, I said, ‘Tell me what’s the best environment for you to get ready for next Tuesday,'” Vogel said before the game. “Initially it was going to be for all three of them to play, but Book ultimately decided that rest would be better for tonight, and Brad is dealing with some tightness in his back. My thing in preseason is if guys are banged up at all, there’s no need to force minutes for those guys. KD chose to be in there and get some more reps and more time in.”

The Suns will start: Eric Gordon, Grayson Allen, Josh Okogie, Kevin Durant and Jusuf Nurkić.

This was the quote yesterday from Vogel:

“We’re going to play most of our guys,” Vogel said. “And try to get our main guys some second half minutes. I don’t know if we’ll finish the game with them, but (it’ll) just be a little more work, try to get them up high 20s, low 30s in terms of minutes. Just continue to build their conditioning and get them ready for opening night.”

The Lakers will be playing what could be their starting lineup for the regular season. D’Angelo Russell, Austin Reaves, Taurean Prince, LeBron James and Anthony Davis will take the floor first.

This means we will see Durant and James square off for the first time since Christmas of 2018.

Suns’ fans will have to wait until the team’s regular season opener on Tuesday against the Warriors on the road to see how this team performs for a full game.

Tonight’s game tips off at 7 p.m. at Acrisure Arena in Palm Springs.

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Brendan Mau is a senior writer covering the Phoenix Suns and more for Burn City Sports. You can follow him on X via @Brendan_Mau

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