Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton enters NBA's health and safety protocols

Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton has entered the NBA's health and safety protocols, the team announced on Monday.

He joins teammate Jae Crowder and head coach Monty Williams in the protocols. Elfrid Payton, who entered protocols on Sunday, returned in Monday night's 114-113 home loss to the Memphis Grizzlies.

The NBA on Monday agreed to reduce the length a vaccinated, asymptomatic player must quarantine from 10 to six days, according to a memo obtained by ESPN.

The Suns (26-6) hosted the Grizzlies on Monday night and play the Oklahoma City Thunder at home on Wednesday night before traveling to Boston on Dec. 31.

Backup center JaVale McGee started in place of Ayton. He had six points and fouled out after playing just 22 minutes.

Ayton, 23, has averaged 17 points and 11 rebounds in 24 games this season.