As if losing to the Golden State Warriors by nearly 40 points wasn’t enough, the Los Angeles Lakers also had to deal with the news of Jordan Clarkson injuring his shoulder in the second quarter.
The severity of his injury is still unknown at this time, but Ryan Ward of Lakers Nation reports that head coach Byron Scott says Clarkson’s status for next week’s season opener is in doubt:
Byron Scott says Jordan Clarkson's status for the season opener is in doubt due to the shoulder injury.
— Ryan Ward (@Lakers_Examiner) October 23, 2015
For his part, however, Jordan Clarkson believes that he will be able to play against the Timberwolves next week according to Shahan Ahmed of NBC Los Angeles:
Clarkson confident that he'll be ready game 1. Said "sharp pain" after getting banged but denied it popped out.
— Shahan Ahmed (@shahanLA) October 23, 2015
The Lakers can ill-afford to lose Clarkson for any long period of time. Kobe Bryant has already missed the last three preseason games, though Scott has maintained that he will play in the season opener. Losing Clarkson as well would rob the Lakers of arguably their second best scorer.
Clarkson is scheduled to receive an MRI on his shoulder Friday, and things will likely become clearer once those results are revealed.
If Clarkson is forced to miss some time, the Lakers will likely lean more on veterans Lou Williams and Nick Young to pick up the slack. Rookie Anthony Brown, who scored 14 points in the preseason finale, could also find himself with more minutes if Clarkson is out.