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Explaining Kendrick Nunn’s return-to-play setback

How concerning is it that Kendrick Nunn had a setback as he looks to make his Lakers debut?

Sacramento Kings v Los Angeles Lakers Photo by Jim Poorten/NBAE via Getty Images

Lakers guard Kendrick Nunn has missed the entirety of the season thus far with a “bone bruise” in his knee (in medical terms, a microtrabecular fracture) that had many fans questioning whether he would play at all this season.

It looked like Nunn was on his way to answering that question, as over the last week he had ramped up, from on-court shooting drills to individual workouts. However, head coach Frank Vogel gave an update yesterday that will have fans again wondering if Nunn just isn’t meant play for the Lakers — Nunn suffered a “setback” during his return-to-play ramp-up, and that progression has now been put on “pause” until his knee settles down.

In the following video, I explained the setback in more detail, including why it is sometimes part of the process for returning from a long-term injury, and the key factor that will dictate Nunn’s timeline for return.

Although this is obviously not great news, we also don’t quite know how bad it is or isn’t. Hopefully we’ll get more updates from the team on Nunn soon, but regardless of that, how quickly he returns to pre-game on-court activities and/or individual workouts will inform us of the extent of the setback.

I’ll keep you updated with my instant thoughts as the situation continues to develop on Twitter over at @3cbPerformance.

Dr. Rajpal Brar, DPT has a doctorate in physical therapy from Northern Arizona University, and runs his own in-person and online sports medicine and performance business, 3CB Performance, in West LA and Valencia, CA in which he further combines his movement expertise and fitness training. He also works at a hospital — giving him experience with patients in the immediate healthcare setting and neurological patients (post stroke, post brain injury) — and has been practicing for 4 years. Brar is additionally training at UCLA’s mindful awareness research center (MARC), has a background in youth basketball coaching and analyzes the Lakers from a medical and skills perspective for Silver Screen and Roll and on his own YouTube Channel.

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