Just before tipoff on Wednesday night against the Portland Trail Blazers, the Los Angeles Lakers announced that Lonnie Walker IV would be sitting out with left foot soreness.
Walker joined Troy Brown Jr. on the bench as both dealt with left foot soreness, putting the Lakers down two starters with Austin Reaves and Dennis Schroder taking their place.
The injuries come at an unfortunate time as the Lakers were right on the verge of returning to full strength with Patrick Beverley returning from suspension.
Even though Walker sat out against the Trail Blazers though, head coach Darvin Ham said that he will be re-evaluated on Thursday morning to determine the severity of the injury.
This marks Walker’s first injury this season although he did miss a pair of games last month due to illness. The guard has started all 17 games he’s played for the Lakers this season, averaging 16.6 points, 2.4 rebounds and 1.9 assists while shooting 47.7% from the field and 36.3% from 3-point range.
Considering Walker has been the Lakers’ third-best player and most consistent scorer outside of LeBron James and Anthony Davis, the hope is that he will be able to return to the floor on the team’s upcoming road trip.
The Lakers head on the road this Friday for a six-game trip that includes tough opponents like the Milwaukee Bucks, Cleveland Cavaliers, Philadelphia 76ers and Toronto Raptors.
Walker expresses desire to stay with Lakers long-term
Even though Walker signed a one-year contract with the Lakers this past offseason for their mid-level exception, he is hoping to play well enough to stick around long-term.
“I’m here for one year,” Walker said in an interview with ESPN’s Dave McMenamin. “I would love to be here for as long as I can. So what do I have to do to get to that point? Being disciplined, being engaged, and just stacking the days and being the best I can be is something that’s going to get me there.”
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