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Kyle Kuzma ‘not ruled out’ against Celtics, wants to play after practicing on Friday

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If Kyle Kuzma has anything to say about it, he’ll be back on the floor when the Lakers take on the Celtics on Saturday.

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NBA: Los Angeles Lakers at Phoenix Suns Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma sat out of Wednesday’s loss to the Denver Nuggets after suffering a minor ankle sprain against the LA Clippers on Monday. Despite reports suggesting he could miss up to a week, Kuzma is hoping to be back on the court for Saturday’s game against the Boston Celtics.

Following practice on Friday, Kuzma told reporters that he feels good enough to play, but head coach Luke Walton said he’s going to wait until Saturday to decide whether or not his starting power forward will suit up:

The Lakers managed to keep their matchup with the No. 2 seeded Nuggets somewhat competitive without both Kuzma and Brandon Ingram, the team’s second and third leading scorers, respectively, but if Kuzma is healthy enough to play against the Celtics, he should.

Not only is Kuzma the only natural power forward the Lakers have on the roster, but he seems to play a little harder when he sees a green and white uniform in front of him.

In their lone matchup with Boston this season, Kuzma scored 25 points on a scorching hot 5-8 shooting from behind the 3-point line. Last season, through two matchups with the Celtics, Kuzma averaged 19 points per game on 53.8 percent shooting from the field, including 55.6 percent shooting from 3-point land. It’s safe to say he takes pride in having a part in the historic rivalry between Boston and L.A.

Would putting another good player out on the floor and trying to win a game hurt the Lakers’ chances of landing a top-10 pick in this summer’s draft? Almost definitely, but during a season where fans have had very little to cheer about, sweeping the Celtics would be good for the soul.

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