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Explained: Thomas Bryant and Dennis Schröder’s thumb injuries

Let’s take a closer look at Thomas Bryant and Dennis Schröder’s respective injuries and potential return timelines.

Portland Trail Blazers v Los Angeles Lakers Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

Newly reacquired Lakers Dennis Schröder and Thomas Bryant both suffered injuries to their thumb that required surgery this week.

The German international point guard Schroder injured his in his first game back after a delayed arrival in Los Angeles due to visa issues. The team was at first unsure if his plan of care would require surgery.

Bryant injured his thumb late in the preseason, and the decision for surgery was made relatively quickly, which likely means he had a full rupture whereas Schröder’s was partially torn but deemed to need surgery.

In the following video, I go into further detail on the players’ respective injuries and when they might be back.

Although no injury is ideal, the good news is this injury and procedure have very good outcomes, especially with the recent advancements discussed in the video. Additionally, the Lakers have plenty of guard depth which will help make up for the loss of Schröder, and should have enough big depth to account for Bryant’s absence in the short term.

That being said, the real impact here will be how this delays the pair’s return to game fitness and rhythm as Schröder didn’t play much during the second half of last season, and Bryant was still getting back to pre-injury levels following his ACL reconstruction. There is a silver lining in that this is an upper-body injury so they can still do conditioning work, but nothing can replace or replicate in-game conditioning & building chemistry.

I will keep you updated as we learn more information, particularly at the reevaluation periods in three weeks.

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 background to cater to elite athletes. Combining his background in biomechanics, movement science, and learning science, he consults in a variety of sports including basketball on movement mechanics and skill acquisition. 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. You can follow him on Twitter at @3cbPerformance.

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