Lakers News: Juan Toscano-Anderson Reflects On Injuries & Missing More Than A Month Of Play
Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports

Juan Toscano-Anderson’s tenure with the Los Angeles Lakers has been bumpy with injuries providing setbacks. But he made his return to the court on Wednesday in the Lakers’ blowout loss to the Miami Heat.

Toscano-Anderson had a 10-game absence after spraining his ankle against the Raptors on Nov. 11. Though he didn’t score a point, he was plus-8 with 7 rebounds and 3 assists in his first game back. Darvin Ham praised Toscano-Anderson for making an impact in his return.

He was a key part of the Lakers’ early season rotation, providing energy and versatility on defense. Injuries hurt Toscano-Anderson’s momentum and he reflected on what he went through while sidelined, via NBA.com:

“A lot, man. That’s one of the things people don’t realize about this game is that, you know, you deal with a lot with your body. I sprained my ankle and I was pretty frustrated because I had an ankle sprain to begin the season, had some back spasms and then I came back had the opportunity to play and then had another sprained ankle. But that’s a part of this game. That’s the price you pay. And I think it was a learning lesson for me. I’m 29 I’m still learning I’m still growing as a young man and it’s allowed me to build perspective for everything. Have gratitude for my job, have gratitude for just being healthy, being able to get up and move comfortably every day. I wasn’t able to do that at some points during the season this year. So it was tough for me to start out with, but my teammates have been there to support me and I’m just trying to take it a day at a time man. Basketball is my job it’s a child’s game and I just want to enjoy it. I think this, being set back from the game, like I said, has allowed me to build perspective and realize what life’s really about. What is life really about? Waking up and being healthy so, you know, like I said it’s allowed me to take it one day at a time.”

The forward was candid in his response, pointing out that moving without pain each day became a challenge. His perspective on the game is one of having fun and enjoying his time, which is evident when you watch the energy he brings onto the court.

Even with their record slipping, Toscano-Anderson is optimistic about the Lakers’ potential when at their best. The only question though is if L.A. will ever be able to reach its potential with an extended injury to Anthony Davis.

However, Toscano-Anderson’s positive energy is crucial in a locker room where losses are piling up.

Toscano-Anderson focused on controlling attitude and effort in limited minutes

In his first game back after a 10-game absence, Toscano-Anderson played 13 minutes late in the Lakers’ loss to the Miami Heat. He emphasized his confidence in playing in all-around lineups for the Lakers.

Being that this was his first game back, Toscano-Anderson was aware his rhythm would take some time. However, he focused on controlling what he could.

“The only thing I can control is my attitude and my effort and so everything else will take care of itself moving forward. And I just wanted to exert everything,” he said. “I didn’t know how much I was going to play. I wasn’t worried about that, whether it was 30 seconds or three minutes, I was gonna give everything I had for my team.”

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