Just over 30 minutes before tip-off against the Golden State Warriors, the Los Angeles Lakers announced Kyle Kuzma was ruled out due to back spasms. He participated in Wednesday’s shootaround and felt the tweak in his back at the conclusion of a pregame routine.
It marks the first time this season the rookie will miss a game. Kuzma’s absence removes a scoring threat from the Lakers bench, where he recently returned to with Larry Nance Jr. coming back from a broken hand.
Kuzma leads the team with 16.7 points per game, and he’s fourth with with 6.1 rebounds per game. Without Kuzma, the scoring onus off the bench will fall onto Jordan Clarkson’s and Julius Randle’s shoulders.
Entering play Wednesday, Lakers reserves combined to average 41.1 points per game, good for fourth overall.
The Lakers are looking to end a two-game skid against a Warriors team they’ve recorded one win against in each of the past three seasons. Head coach Luke Walton and Nance each said they were looking forward to facing the defending NBA champions.
Kuzma is expected to be re-evaluated Thursday, which is a practice day for the Lakers. They’re tentatively scheduled to practice again Friday followed by a flight to Denver for Saturday’s road game.
Additional info on when Kyle Kuzma tweaked his back (He is out tonight with back spasms). pic.twitter.com/WWNFRvXKG6
— Lakers Nation (@LakersNation) November 30, 2017
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