Los Angeles Lakers guard Wayne Ellington will be sidelined for his team’s regular season opener against the Golden State Warriors on Tuesday, head coach Frank Vogel announced at practice on Monday.
“Wayne Ellington will be out,” Vogel said. “[Kendrick] Nunn is going to be listed as questionable and [Malik] Monk listed as probable. Everybody else is good to go.”
Ellington was inactive for the Lakers’ last two preseason games due to a sore hamstring, which an MRI later revealed to be a Grade 1 strain. Prior to Ellington’s injury, he was a regular in Vogel’s rotation, averaging 21.2 minutes per game through the first four preseason games.
Ellington will almost certainly have an opportunity to earn that playing time back once he returns from injury, but he’ll face some stiff competition from the other guards on the roster. Not only were Monk and Nunn a standouts in the preseason, but undrafted rookie Austin Reaves was a pleasant surprise for the Lakers.
Meanwhile, Ellington struggled to get his shots to fall when he was playing, shooting 28.6% from the field and 25% from 3-point range in the preseason. Perhaps the soreness in his hamstring contributed to those low shooting percentages, but regardless, he didn’t have the best start to his Lakers career, and that might have an affect on how long it takes for him to get back into the rotation.
Even if Ellington does return to form upon his return from injury, he’ll still have to battle for minutes with the aforementioned guards, plus Rajon Rondo and Avery Bradley, the latter of whom the Lakers claimed off of waivers on Monday. Suffice to say, it’s not a fun time to be a reserve guard in Los Angeles right now.
The Lakers and Warriors will tip-off Tuesday at 7 p.m. PT on TNT.
For more Lakers talk, subscribe to the Silver Screen and Roll podcast feed on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or Google Podcasts.