Lopez will start at center for Friday's game against the Hornets, Bill Oram of the Orange County Register reports. Lopez returned to the lineup Wednesday following an eight-game absence, but was eased back into the action off the bench, logging just 16 minutes. He'll now take back his starting role at center and should see a boost in playing time, likely something around the 22.2 minutes he's averaged so far this season. With Lopez re-entering the starting five, Julius Randle will shift over to power forward, with Kyle Kuzma heading to a bench role.
Lopez (ankle) came off the bench and registered 10 points (4-11 FG, 2-6 3Pt) and five rebounds across 16 minutes in Wednesday's 133-96 loss to the Thunder. After missing the previous eight games with the ankle injury, Lopez was eased back into the rotation in his return to action Wednesday, allowing the 6-foot-9 Julius Randle to draw his fourth straight start at center. Given how unproductive the Lakers' starting unit was in a game in which the Thunder led by as many as 39 points, Lopez seems likely to reenter the starting five in short order, thereby allowing Randle to reprise his role as a high-usage option on the second unit. Even before suffering the injury, Lopez had struggled to find his footing in his first season in Los Angeles. He's averaging a career-low 12.7 points and 4.3 rebounds in 22.2 minutes per game and is shooting a lowly 44.1 percent from the floor.
Lopez (ankle) will come off the bench Wednesday against the Thunder, Mike Trudell of Lakers.com reports. Lopez is set to return after missing the previous eight games with a sprained ankle, though the Lakers will ease him back into things, bringing him off the bench and reportedly keeping him on a minutes restriction. It's unclear if the Lakers plan to continue to bring Lopez off the bench after Wednesday, but for now, Julius Randle will draw another start at center.
Lopez (ankle) has been cleared to play Wednesday against the Thunder, Mike Bresnahan of Spectrum SportsNet reports. The big man missed eight games with a sprained ankle, but after going through practice Tuesday, he's been cleared to return to game action. Lopez had been virtually locked in as the starting center prior to the injury, so the expectation is that he'll return to the lineup, which would likely push Julius Randle back to the bench. That said, coach Luke Walton stopped short of confirming that Lopez will start Wednesday, and he hinted that the big man will have minutes restriction.
Lopez (ankle) has been cleared for a return to practice and is listed as questionable for Wednesday's game against the Thunder, Marc J. Spears of ESPN reports. On Dec. 19 Lopez was given a timetable of at least three weeks, so a return at any point over the next two games would be ahead of that schedule. He's been given a questionable designation going into Wednesday's contest, though the Lakers could take a cautious approach and try and get him back for a few more practices first. If that's the case, Friday's matchup with the Hornets could be an option for Lopez as well in terms of a target date. Either way, look for another update on Lopez following Wednesday's morning shootaround. Guys like Larry Nance and Julius Randle would likely see less minutes in the frontcourt if Lopez plays.
Last 7 Games
|3 Year Avg||73||551||49.9||46||33.6||278||80.1||1425||19.52||2194|