The Los Angeles Lakers released their injury report for the second night of their current back-to-back against the Charlotte Hornets on Friday night, and it’s a doozy, including all of their big three of LeBron James, Russell Westbrook and Anthony Davis, as well as a variety of their supporting cast members.
Malik Monk (left groin soreness) and Kendrick Nunn (right knee bone bruise) are both out. Monk missed multiple preseason games with the same ailment, but this will be his first regular season game he’ll miss with the issue. Nunn has been out for the entire season so far.
Potentially joining them on the bench is normal starting shooting guard Avery Bradley (stomach illness), as well as Davis (right wrist soreness), James (left knee soreness/effusion) — which apparently means there is some level of fluid buildup in the knee that caused him to miss last night’s loss to the Sixers — and Westbrook (right knee soreness). All four are listed as questionable.
For those of you keeping score at home, “questionable,” in NBA injury report parlance, generally means a player is about 50/50 to play. Given that this is the second night of a road back-to-back less than 24 hours after last night’s game ended, that would seem to up the chances that all four may miss this game.
If all four are out in Charlotte, that would leave the Lakers with a rotation of:
- Centers: Dwight Howard and DeAndre Jordan, the latter of whom has been completely out of the normal rotation for weeks.
- Wings/Forwards: Carmelo Anthony, Stanley Johnson, Kent Bazemore and Trevor Ariza (the latter two of whom have also been out of the rotation for months and the last two games, respectively).
- Guards: Talen Horton-Tucker, Austin Reaves and Wayne Ellington, that latter of whom was — stop me if you’ve heard this before — entirely out of the rotation before Frank Vogel inserted him out of desperation vs. the Sixers last night.
That is nine players. So... yeah. That’s rough.
Now, Westbrook has yet to miss a game this year and has always been durable, and Davis said last night that his x-rays on his wrist were negative and he was feeling all right other than some soreness. So those two might play, and maybe even James will too, but the point is that this one could get ugly quickly if this injury report holds.
The Lakers and Hornets will tip off around 4:30 p.m. PT. And God help us, this game will be televised nationally on ESPN.