NBA Insider Gives Injury Update on Lakers’ Kentavious Caldwell-Pope

Published 01/04/2021, 11:00 PM EST
Los Angeles Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (1) reacts to making a three point basket during the first quarter against the Miami Heat in game one of the 2020 NBA Finals at AdventHealth Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports


The reigning champions, the Lakers, are having a brilliant start to the new season. They are on a winning streak right now, having defeated the San Antonio Spurs twice as well as the Memphis Grizzlies. However, they are missing an integral bench member right because of an ankle injury that happened when they played their first game with the Spurs. So the question remains; is Kentavious Caldwell-Pope coming back for the Lakers’ next match with the Grizzlies?

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There are high chances of KCP returning

The Los Angeles Lakers’ guard was playing impressively against the Spurs on Friday night until a sprained ankle forced him to walk out. During the third quarter, the man had bagged 8 of the Lakers 10 points.

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But while taking a dunk, he had a shaky landing on his left ankle that left him lying on the court for several minutes. Eventually, he made his way to the locker room and did not return. Since then, the 27-year-old hasn’t played with the team and fans are waiting on some news about his return.

Mike Trudell has now come around with some reassuring news. He posted on Twitter, “KCP on his ankle: Ankle is feeling great. I practiced today, got a little movement in. Still not 100%, but hopefully I’ll be able to go tomorrow. Depends how I feel.”

KCP on his ankle: “Ankle is feeling great. I practiced today, got a little movement in. Still not 100%, but hopefully I’ll be able to go tomorrow. Depends how I feel."

— Mike Trudell (@LakersReporter) January 4, 2021

What if the Lakers are left to play without KCP?

Along with KCP, Alex Caruso is also not with the team. He hasn’t played since their win against the Minnesota Timberwolves on December 27. However, his absence comes due to the NBA’s health and safety protocols.

Without a doubt, the purple and gold are missing Caruso’s perimeter defense. KCP might not be their greatest defender, but the Lakers need all they can after struggling a tad bit defensively.

However, there is a silver lining to KCP and Caruso being gone. It gives their 20-year-old Talen Horton-Tucker an opportunity to play longer. He was a delight to watch during the preseason, but so far has been given a much smaller role.

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Orlando, Florida, USA; Los Angeles Lakers guard Alex Caruso (4) celebrates with guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (1) after defeating the Miami Heat in game two of the 2020 NBA Finals at AdventHealth Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Regardless of whether Kentavious returns, the Lakers’ will be looking to continue their winning streak. If they win even without two of their significant players, it is a wake-up call for all the other teams in the West; de-throning them won’t come easy.

 

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Yashima Bhatia

1098 articles

Yashima Bhatia is an NBA writer for EssentiallySports who specialises in providing nuanced predictions and updates for matches. She has a Bachelor's degree in journalism and mass communication. Yashima's love for playing the game came up at a young age, when the excitement of the games coupled with the intensity of the Playoffs had her hooked.

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