At least now we know.
Though there was some tenuous optimism that Los Angeles Lakers starting point guard D’Angelo Russell might return to the floor for LA on Friday against his old club, the Minnesota Timberwolves, D-Lo himself revealed that that is, sadly, not to be.
Russell informed Dave McMenamin of ESPN that he would miss Friday’s action as he continued to rehabilitate his right ankle sprain, first incurred when he inadvertently stepped on the foot of Golden State Warriors backup shooting guard Donte DiVincenzo last Thursday.
McMenamin followed up with the next obvious question: what about Sunday, in a rematch against the still-hurting Warriors?
“We’ll see once we get through Friday,” Russell responded.
The Lakers have gone 2-1 in their games without Russell (really you could say 3-1, since he departed that Warriors game during the first quarter) thus far, although that solid record is in a bit of jeopardy now with All-Star small forward LeBron James set to miss multiple weeks with a mysterious right foot injury.
Most recently, LA defeated the Oklahoma City Thunder last night in an absolutely critical game to bolster its playoff odds, while missing Russell, James and Anthony Davis, the latter of whom was sitting on the second night of a back-to-back as something of a precaution.
Russell’s playmaking and shooting make him a key piece for this Lakers team, and his presence will be imperative for LA for however without long it’s James. So here’s hoping he returns sooner rather than later.