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Randle Needs Stitches After Practice Injury
Tuesday, Aug. 30
The team said Randle needed seven stitches to repair the injury, which occurred to the webbing between his middle and ring fingers.
Heading into his third NBA season, Randle averaged 11.3 points and 10.2 rebounds in 2015-16. It was essentially his rookie year, with Randle breaking his right tibia in the first game of 2014-15.
Assuming the Lakers have done all the proper testing—including an X-ray and MRI—this injury should have no effect on the team or Randle. We're still more than a month out from players returning from their summer breaks for training camp, which means Randle will have ample time to heal.
This should also have no bearing on the Lakers' battle for the starting power forward spot, which includes Randle, second-year forward Larry Nance and the newly signed Yi Jianlian. Randle remains the overwhelming favorite, albeit one with something to prove after an up-and-down campaign. He shot just 42.9 percent from the floor and struggled at times using the same post-brute tactics that worked at Kentucky.
The Lakers are set to receive an offensive makeover with new coach Luke Walton taking over. Walton comes from the Golden State Warriors, where he led the team to a record-setting start while Steve Kerr was recovering from back surgery. Randle likened his role to that of Draymond Green.
“Obviously there are a lot of similarities between Draymond and myself,” Randle said, per Jovan Buha of ESPN.com. “There will be a lot to learn, but especially with the style of play, it’ll be fun for us to get up and down. Sharing the ball is going to be big for us this year. Just building that chemistry on both sides of the floor.”
Again, the injury seems minor, so this should have no bearing on his status. The two-week time frame is likely even a little conservative given that it's the offseason. But if we return 14 days from now and Randle's still not back out on the court, then there might be more than meets the eye.
Follow Tyler Conway (@jtylerconway) on Twitter.