Ohm Youngmisuk: Lonzo Ball is heading for an MRI after feeling soreness in his left knee this morning. The team wants to get it checked out for precautionary reasons.
Mike Bresnahan: Lakers say Lonzo Ball (sprained shoulder) is upgraded to probable for tonight’s game vs. Charlotte.
Mike Bresnahan: Luke Walton on Lonzo Ball: “He went through shoot-around, says he feels good. If he stays on schedule, he should play tonight.”
Lonzo Ball will have to wait to play Russell Westbrook after the Los Angeles Lakers point guard was ruled out for Wednesday night's game against Oklahoma City. Ball and Brook Lopez, who is available to play, were both cleared to practice by the team Tuesday. Ball, though, will miss his sixth straight game with a bruised left shoulder after he felt soreness Wednesday morning following a workout on Tuesday. The rookie point guard did participate in morning shootaround on Wednesday and will practice Thursday.
Even New Year’s Eve seems an optimistic timetable for Ball. That’s the day Ball is set to be reevaluated and Coach Luke Walton typically wants players returning from injury to get in at least one full practice. That could push Ball’s return into the next week. “There’s no target (date) at least from my standpoint,” Walton said. “The only thing that matters with him is getting him healthy. There’s no reason to try to target a date and get him back. Obviously we want him back as soon as possible but big picture and what he means to us. We need him to be healthy so once he’s back he stays back.”
Bill Oram: Lonzo Ball on the shoulder injury that will sideline him for at least a week: “Really didn’t hurt until the next day.” Says it’s disappointing not to play on Christmas, but there’s always next time year.
Mike Trudell: An MRI on Lonzo Ball’s left shoulder revealed a “shoulder sprain,” per the Lakers. Ball will miss tomorrow’s game against Minnesota and be reevaluated in one week. He suffered the injury in the 2nd Q of Saturday’s game vs. Portland.
Bill Oram: Lonzo Ball’s one week timeline means he will be out for at least next three games. Lakers play on New Year’s Eve at Houston, but that seems doubtful given Ball won’t have gotten a full practice in yet.
Los Angeles Lakers rookie point guard Lonzo Ball practiced in full Monday and declared himself ready to play in the team's season opener Thursday against the LA Clippers. When asked what made the regular-season opener special after his experiences in the summer league and preseason, Ball downplayed it a bit, saying, "It's the opener. That's all there is to it. Gotta get a win."
Mike Trudell: Lonzo Ball: “I felt good. Still a little bit of discomfort. Just trying to progress every day.” Says he’s not sure about playing tomorrow.
Mike Bresnahan: Lonzo's absence has been a "setback, for sure" for team chemistry, Walton said. But Walton hopeful Lonzo will practice every day next week.
Mike Bresnahan: Will Lonzo play in preseason finale Friday vs. Clippers? Said Luke Walton: "I'm hoping, yes. Am I planning on him playing? No."
Lonzo Ball did some on-court work before tonight's game against Utah to test his ankle. He remains out against Utah. Luke Walton said the Lakers would wait to see if Ball can return to practice and then see how the ankle responds before determining if he will play in the preseason finale on Friday.
Tania Ganguli: Luke Walton said Lonzo Ball will be out for Tuesday's game. Not a surprise since he did not practice today.
Lakers coach Luke Walton said Ball is still having difficulty moving side to side and did not rule out the possibility of the No. 2 overall pick sitting out the remainder of the preseason. Walton did make it clear, though, that Ball is considered day-to-day, adding that "I assume he will be back" by the season opener against the LA Clippers on Oct. 19.
"I hope not, but yeah, that's a possibility," Walton said when asked if Ball could miss the rest of the preseason. "It is different with every player. He is new to the team, so we've got to see how long these types of injuries take him to come back from. We'd like to have him back, but again, we are not going to rush him back just to try to get him out there."
"If he is not ready, he won't [play]," Walton said of the season opener. "Again, it is day to day so I assume he will be back by then. If he's not ready to play basketball and really cut and move and do everything that you need that ankle you need it to do for you, we are not going to play him." "It's just still sore," Walton added. "He said he can run straight and feels no pain, but it's going side to side that really gets him."
Walton did make it clear, though, that Ball is considered day-to-day, adding that "I assume he will be back" by the season opener against the LA Clippers on Oct. 19.
Tania Ganguli: Lakers announce Brandon Ingram will be available to play tomorrow in Vegas. Lonzo Ball (ankle) and Andrew Bogut (groin) are questionable.
Lonzo Ball (mild ankle sprain) and Brandon Ingram (head) did not practice on Tuesday and their statuses will be updated tomorrow before the Los Angeles Lakers play the Denver Nuggets.
"I don't think Lonzo's is anything too serious," Lakers head coach Luke Walton said. "But since it's preseason, we gave him the day off to make sure his ankle's right and he'll get reevaluated tomorrow. He had treatment all day today."
Kristian Winfield: Magic Johnson said the Lakers don't know if Lonzo Ball's calf or groin injury is a tear or not. Wants to make sure nothing is seriousZ
Lonzo Ball has been ruled out by the Los Angeles Lakers for Monday night's NBA Las Vegas Summer League championship game with a mild calf strain, the team said. The Lakers' No. 2 overall pick had said he would receive treatment leading up to the game against the Portland Trail Blazers and was hopeful to play.
Lonzo Ball: Lonzo Ball is expected to play tonight in summer league game, source told ESPN. Missed last game with groin injury. 10:30 ET on ESPN2.
Mark Medina: Lonzo Ball and Kyle Kuzma participated in team workout/walk trough today while Josh Hart & PJ Dozier received treatment.
Sam Amick: Summer League letdown: I'm told Lakers' Lonzo Ball will rest a sore groin tonight & miss a faceoff/rematch against Kings' De'Aaron Fox.
Ramona Shelburne: Lonzo Ball (groin) is OK, source says. Lakers just wanna play it safe. So no face off vs Fox & the Kings.
September 26, 2021 | 6:15 am EDT Update
“The NBA should insist that all players and staff are vaccinated or remove them from the team,” NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar tells Rolling Stone. “There is no room for players who are willing to risk the health and lives of their teammates, the staff and the fans simply because they are unable to grasp the seriousness of the situation or do the necessary research. What I find especially disingenuous about the vaccine deniers is their arrogance at disbelieving immunology and other medical experts. Yet, if their child was sick or they themselves needed emergency medical treatment, how quickly would they do exactly what those same experts told them to do?”
Irving, who serves as a vice president on the executive committee of the players’ union, recently started following and liking Instagram posts from a conspiracy theorist who claims that “secret societies” are implanting vaccines in a plot to connect Black people to a master computer for “a plan of Satan.” This Moderna microchip misinformation campaign has spread across multiple NBA locker rooms and group chats, according to several of the dozen-plus current players, Hall-of-Famers, league executives, arena workers and virologists interviewed for this story over the past week.
When asked directly about Irving’s vaccination status — or his plans to change it — multiple people familiar with his thinking declined to answer directly. But one confidant and family member floated to Rolling Stone the idea of anti-vaxx players skipping home games to dodge the New York City ordinance… or at least threatening to protest them, until the NBA changes its ways.
“There are so many other players outside of him who are opting out, I would like to think they would make a way,” says Kyrie’s aunt, Tyki Irving, who runs the seven-time All-Star’s family foundation and is one of the few people in his regular circle of advisors. “It could be like every third game. So it still gives you a full season of being interactive and being on the court, but with the limitations that they’re, of course, oppressing upon you. There can be some sort of formula where the NBA and the players can come to some sort of agreement.”
A spokeswoman for Irving declined to respond to a list of questions regarding his vaccination and playing status, and Irving did not immediately respond to a message from Rolling Stone. But as teams return to pre-season training camps next week, fifty to sixty NBA players have yet to receive a single vaccine dose, league sources tell RS. Most are considered merely reluctant skeptics. Some of the holdouts, however, amount to their own shadow roster of anti-vaxxers mounting a behind-the-scenes resistance to Covid protocols — and the truth.
Isaac considers un-vaxxed players to be vilified and bullied, and he thinks “it’s an injustice” to automatically make heroes out of vaccinated celebrities. He rejects the NBA’s proposal for a vaccine mandate and social distancing for players like him during team travel: “You can play on the same court. We can touch the same ball. We can bump chests. We can do all those things on the court. And then when it comes to being on the bus, we have to be in different parts of the bus? To me, it doesn’t seem logically consistent. “If you are vaccinated, in other places you still have to wear the mask regardless. It’s like, ‘OK, then what is the mask necessarily for?’” Isaac continues. “And if Kyrie says that from his position of his executive power in the NBPA, then kudos to him.”
Enes Kanter — the veteran center, devout Muslim and outspoken liberal — senses a creep of the religious right upon his workplace, which just happens to involve players like Isaac sweating all over him and yelling in his face: “If a guy’s not getting vaccinated because of his religion, I feel like we are in a time where the religion and science has to go to together,” he tells RS. “I’ve talked to a lot of religious guys — I’m like: ‘It saves people’s lives, so what is more important than that?’”
In their sit-down interview back in August, Durant and Green rehashed the incident and how it ultimately affected KD’s decision to leave the Warriors. Surprisingly, KD claimed it wasn’t the beef itself that pushed him away, but the way Steve Kerr, Bob Myers and the front office handled things. “It wasn’t the argument,” the former Warriors star said. “It was the way that everybody … Steve Kerr acted like it didn’t happen. Bob Myers tried to just discipline you and think that would put a mask over everything. I really felt that was such a big situation for us as a group, the first time we went through something like that. We had to get that s— all out.”