The Los Angeles Lakers may have played 51 games this season, but deciphering the team’s potential and true identity is hardly a possibility. Lonzo Ball, Michael Beasley, Tyson Chandler, Josh Hart, Brandon Ingram, LeBron James, Kyle Kuzma and JaVale McGee have all missed time.
Despite suspensions, personal matters, illness and injuries wrecking havoc on the season, McGee has zero doubt over the caliber of team the Lakers can be when healthy. “I know exactly how we’ll look like,” he said.
“We’re amazing with everybody 100 percent healthy and playing well. Once we get that, I don’t think we’ll be able to be stopped.”
The Lakers have had their full complement of players for but a handful of games this season. Beasley (personal) James (groin strain) and Rondo (hand/finger) have endured the more prolonged absences.
Rondo returned late last week from a sprained right ring finger that required surgery; an operation that came one week after he recovered from a procedure to repair a fracture in his shooting hand.
Rondo’s finger injury occurred in the same Christmas Day game that James suffered a strained groin in. Despite early optimism, he’s been sidelined since — missing 17 games and counting — as the Lakers have yet to identify when James might make his way back.
Now Ball is dealing with his own injury woes as a Grade 3 sprained left ankle suffered on Jan. 19 is expected to keep him out four to six weeks.
Kuzma recently conceded the constant shuffling of the lineup has made it difficult for the Lakers to develop chemistry, while head coach Luke Walton echoed a sentiment similar to that of McGee’s.
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