Frank Vogel said on Saturday that while the Lakers are mostly “still undecided” on who will play in their Sunday preseason game against the LA Clippers, there is one player that will miss the exhibition. Vogel said that Alex Caruso is “still sore” from a “hip flexor strain” he suffered in Friday’s 87-81 preseason win against the LA Clippers, and did not practice on Saturday. He will sit out on Sunday, and be reevaluated at the Lakers’ next practice.
Caruso left the Lakers’ Friday victory with what the Lakers then called a “sore hip flexor” he sustained while slipping on the floor, and opted not to return to the game out of an abundance of caution. Caruso had played 10 minutes off the bench and scored 3 points before deciding to end his night.
Caruso figures to play a prominent role for the Lakers’ reserve units again this year, and so the team losing him for any length of time would be a major blow to their rotation. The team likely has the guard depth to sustain it, but as the basketball world saw when Frank Vogel’s final chess move to secure the 2020 title was opting to start Caruso in Game 6 of the NBA Finals, he is a valuable part of this team, and they will need him healthy when games matter, so expect them to be careful.
With Caruso missing at least this game, expect the recently impressive Talen Horton-Tucker to get some extra minutes to fill the gap in the backcourt. The Lakers will next play the Clippers for the second game in a row on Sunday at 5:30 p.m. PT.
This story may update with more information as it develops. For more Lakers talk, subscribe to the Silver Screen and Roll podcast feed on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or Google Podcasts. You can follow Harrison on Twitter at @hmfaigen.