Without Brandon Ingram (ankle), JaVale McGee (flu), and Rajon Rondo (hand surgery), the Los Angeles Lakers were dominated by the Washington Wizards on the second night of a back-to-back situation.
As McGee was a late scratch against the Wizards, Ingram and Rondo did not travel with the team during their four-game road trip. With the Lakers looking to close out the trip with a win against the Brooklyn Nets on Tuesday, they hope to return to Los Angeles with good news.
Before the 128-110 loss to the Wizards, head coach Luke Walton provided updates on Ingram and Rondo, via Mike Trudell:
Walton added that he’s hopeful to get Brandon Ingram and Rajon Rondo back on Friday vs. New Orleans, but we’ll see when the team returns from this trip.
— Mike Trudell (@LakersReporter) December 16, 2018
While the Lakers have a ‘next man up’ mentality, it is difficult to replace what Ingram, McGee and Rondo can do. Without two primary ballhandlers and a rim protector, Walton has had to rely on Svi Mykhailiuk and Moritz Wagner, who have tried their best under the circumstances.
With three days in between the Nets and New Orleans Pelicans game, the hope is all three players return so they can continue their climb in the Western Conference. It will also mark the first time Rondo and Julius Randle play against their former teams as Anthony Davis plays in front of the Staples Center amid trade rumors.