Andrew Bogut made great progress toward being ready for his Los Angeles Lakers debut, fully participating in practice Tuesday and scrimmaging with his new team. Bogut’s been out with a strained groin, but his presence seemed to be felt in his first run with the team.
“Today he was pretty damn impressive today in what he was doing,” Walton said of Bogut. “He did some nice things offensively, but defensively he was all over the place. Had five or six blocks, bunch of rebounds, he was kind of the captain out there as far as telling people where to go.”
Walton hopes to find minutes for Bogut in the season opener on Thursday, but would not commit to whether he considered him the team’s backup center. Instead, Walton said his decision will be more matchup based.
The Lakers have good news on the Josh Hart front. He suffered what they initially called an Achilles strain during practice on Monday, but an MRI showed it’s bursitis, which the announcement called an “improvement over the initial diagnosis.”
Luke Walton gives an injury update and talks about what the team is still working on ahead of Opening Night. pic.twitter.com/U9ggPt2hYn— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) October 17, 2017
“He says he feels good, it’s not a lot of swelling or anything like that so it’s kind of day-to-day,” Walton said of Hart. “Once he feels better then we’ll slowly start working him into the groove of things.”
Julius Randle hasn’t gone through full practice, and his back strain has now been diagnosed as an intercostal strain. Another thing to keep an eye on is the status of Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. He was elbowed in the face during practice on Monday, was feeling discomfort, and is scheduled to undergo an MRI to confirm what may be a broken nose. Either way, Caldwell-Pope is suspended through the first two games, so it shouldn’t be much of a setback to start the season.