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Nick Young Injury: Updates on Lakers Star's Ankle and Return

R. Cory Smith@@RCorySmithSenior Writer IJanuary 27, 2015

Los Angeles Lakers' Nick Young (0) stares at an official  in the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Utah Jazz Friday, Dec. 27, 2013, in Salt Lake City. Jazz won 105-103. (AP Photo/Gene Sweeney Jr.)
Gene Sweeney Jr./Associated Press

Nick Young is dealing with a sprained ankle after suffering the injury in practice on Jan. 26. He has not returned to the floor since, but is expected to play on Feb. 4 against the Bucks.

Continue for updates. 


Young to Play vs. Bucks

Tuesday, Feb. 3

Nick Young will be back in action for the Los Angeles Lakers when the team plays the Milwaukee Bucks on Feb. 4 confirms the team:

Los Angeles Lakers @Lakers

Nick Young will also play tomorrow after going through an entire practice today. http://t.co/ThvlUg5pps


Young Misses Multiple Games

Sunday, Feb. 1

"Byron Scott said he may not play Nick Young (ankle) or Tarik Black (ankle) today, as he hasn't seen them practice. But both are available," announced Mike Trudell of Lakers.com ahead of Sunday's game against the New York Knicks.

Young did not play in the game and spoke on the decision with Arash Markazi of ESPN:

Arash Markazi @ArashMarkazi

Nick Young on not playing: "I can't tell you what it is. I felt good personally. It's not always up to me. It's in the coach's hands."

On Jan. 30, the Lakers provided a statement from Scott discussing Young's status during practice:

Los Angeles Lakers @Lakers

Nick Young did some running today but Byron says he was “real light on it & couldn’t really cut.” Have to see how he improves before Sunday.


Young Suffers Sprained Ankle

Monday, Jan. 26

Eric Pincus of the Los Angeles Times passed along the news and added a quote from Young:

To make matters worse, the high-scoring guard-forward suffered a right ankle sprain near the end of practice, which could put his status on Tuesday in jeopardy when the Lakers (12-33) host the Wizards (30-15).

'I'll just wait and see,' said Young, who acknowledged the ankle was throbbing.  'I'm a solider.'

He is currently averaging 14.1 points and 2.3 rebounds in 23.9 minutes per game this season.

Mike Trudell of Lakers.com noted just how important Young is to the offense:

Mike Trudell @LakersReporter

You can see how much the Lakers need Nick Young to create offense off the bench. 17.9 ppg off the pine last year.

Prior to the start of the 2014-15 NBA season, Young suffered a setback due to injury. The 29-year-old had to undergo surgery for a torn ligament in his right thumb before returning to the court.

Following that injury, first-year coach Byron Scott spoke about Young's significance, per Arash Markazi of ESPNLosAngeles.com:

It hurts us, as far as that's a guy that we know that can come off the bench and provide instant offense for us. Obviously, we're going to have to look elsewhere for that ... It hurts us.

I really looked at our roster and thought we had 10 to 12 guys that I thought were really good at what we could do. We were going to have a really balanced rotation, but sometimes you have to make adjustments.

Young is added to a long list of injuries for the Lakers already this season. In addition to Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash was lost with back issues and Julius Randle broke his leg in the season opener.

The Lakers have languished near the bottom of the Western Conference all season long, and can ill afford to lose someone like Young if they hope to salvage a respectable record. It was recently revealed that Bryant has a torn right rotator cuff, which will cause him to miss the rest of the current campaign.

Lackluster leadership has plagued L.A. amid its struggles. Bryant's exorbitant contract was an impediment that prevented the Lakers from building depth on the roster in the event that key injuries occurred.  

With the amount of shots Bryant and Young tend to take, it will be interesting to see what Scott does offensively while Young tries to work his way back onto the court.

Follow @RCorySmith on Twitter.

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