As the Lakers emerge from a tumultuous All-Star break to play the Clippers on Friday, they will be missing a couple of key guards in their rotation. Avery Bradley, who has started 42 games for the purple and gold this season, missed the team’s last game before the break against the Golden State Warriors due to an injury that the team listed as right knee effusion. It sounds like the 10-day All-Star layoff was not quite enough time to allow the 31-year-old to completely recover from that ailment.
“Avery is out. Still day-to-day, but he’s going to be out for tomorrow,” Frank Vogel said after the Lakers’ practice on Thursday.
Kendrick Nunn, meanwhile, has missed the entire season due to a bone bruise in his right knee. Attempts to ramp up his rehab to get back into playing shape have been met with setbacks due to the lingering nature of the injury. However, Nunn is going to try again to get back on the court and help the Lakers down the stretch as they make what will most likely be a second straight run at the Western Conference play-in tournament.
“K. Nunn, coming out of the break is going to ramp up his work again and see how the knee responds, but will still remain out,” Vogel said on Thursday.
Both Vogel and Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka expect Nunn to remain out until late March at the earliest. Nunn was signed with the Lakers’ taxpayer mid-level exception last summer, ostensibly to be a backup point guard for Russell Westbrook and a scoring complement to LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Westbrook off the bench. Obviously, that plan has gone awry, just like pretty much everything else surrounding the Lakers’ addition of Westbrook.
Though Nunn will not singlehandedly turn the Lakers’ fortunes around, he could still be a helpful addition down the stretch when (and if) he does return, as the team will once again have to claw their way into the playoffs instead of cruising to the high seed they were widely expected to secure at the beginning of the season.
Elsewhere on the injury report, Davis (obviously) remains out, but Vogel did say that he is off of the crutches he was using last week. LeBron James (left knee sorenesss/effusion) was listed by the team as “questionable” vs. the Clippers — but will likely play, given that Vogel didn’t even mention him in his injury updates — and Carmelo Anthony (right hamstring strain) is probable to play after practicing on Thursday.