It looks like the Los Angeles Lakers will be getting some reinforcements back for their game against the Miami Heat on Thursday night. After missing three games with a right big toe contusion, center Andre Drummond announced on Instagram that he plans to play against Miami. "Still missing a toenail but tomorrow night we're lit," Drummond wrote.
The game against the Heat will be just Drummond's second game in a Lakers uniform following his underwhelming debut with the team last week. In his first game, Drummond scored just four points on 2-of-6 shooting, and despite his standing as arguably the NBA's best rebounder, he pulled in only a single board as he struggled to shake off the rust of more than a month off. The Lakers were outscored by the Milwaukee Bucks by eight points in the 14 minutes that Drummond played before he left the game with the toe injury. Afterward, Drummond revealed that Brook Lopez stepped on his foot in the first quarter, which caused his toe injury.
The Lakers went 2-1 in the three games that Drummond missed, but they'll certainly be happy to have him back in the lineup, especially considering LeBron James and Anthony Davis are still sidelined with their own injury issues. The Lakers are hoping that Drummond can help keep them afloat in the Western Conference playoff race until James and Davis are able to return to action. The Lakers simply cannot afford any more health problems, so hopefully, Drummond's toe injury isn't an issue that lingers. Plus, he's been moved into the starting lineup in place of Marc Gasol, so his presence will loom large for Los Angeles going forward.
Entering Thursday's matchup, the Lakers sit fifth in the Western Conference playoff picture, but they're just three games ahead of the No. 7 seed Dallas Mavericks. Every game remaining will count when it comes to postseason positioning, and the Lakers are banking on a healthy Drummond to help them from sinking too far in the standings before they get their two superstars back.