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Avery Bradley undergoes MRI, out vs. Kings with UCL sprain

The Lakers will have to try yet another new starting lineup with Avery Bradley sidelined with a right thumb sprain.

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Sacramento Kings v Los Angeles Lakers Photo by Chris Elise/NBAE via Getty Images

It feels like every time the Lakers get slightly healthier, they get another name added to the injury report. This time, the new member of the team’s injury list is Avery Bradley, who after previously being listed as questionable for the team’s Tuesday night matchup with the Sacramento Kings due to “right hand soreness,” has now been declared out with a right thumb sprain.

The team found the UCL sprain on an MRI, and will have him undergo further testing:

Bradley, who has started the last 16 games for the team, will now head to the bench as the Lakers are forced to try yet another starting lineup. The team did not give any timetable beyond Bradley missing this game.

With Bradley out, it’s unclear who the Lakers will start in his place. Austin Reaves could be an option to give the team another defender, shooter and ball mover who plays well off of stars. Wayne Ellington could also provide the team some shooting, and Malik Monk could get another look with the starters for some shooting and playmaking verve. Kent Bazemore also theoretically still exists.

If the previous paragraph didn’t make it clear, I would start Reaves — especially if the team is staying big — because of how his unique blend of skills complement the team’s Big 3, but in short, the Lakers should have plenty of guard depth to get by without Bradley, no matter how much head coach Frank Vogel clearly values the veteran guard.

The team could also go small and put multiple of those guard options into a lineup around LeBron James, Russell Westbrook and Anthony Davis to maximize spacing, something they haven’t done a ton of this year but appear to be trending more towards valuing.

All we know for sure right now is that there is almost zero chance Vogel will tell us what the starting lineup is until 30 minutes prior to the start of the game, as he guards those decisions with the secrecy of the nuclear codes. So don’t necessarily expect to get any confirmation until around 6:30 p.m. PT.

The Lakers and Kings will tip off at 7 p.m. PT in Sacramento on Tuesday night. The game will be televised locally on Spectrum SportsNet.

This developing story may be updated with more information and analysis. 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.

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