Lakers News: Dennis Schroder Expected to Return from 4-Game Absence vs. Blazers

Jenna CiccotelliAnalyst IFebruary 26, 2021

Los Angeles Lakers guard Dennis Schroder (17) takes a shot during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game against the Oklahoma City Thunder Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)
Ashley Landis/Associated Press

Los Angeles Lakers guard Dennis Schroder is expected to return on Friday against the Portland Trail Blazers after missing four games because of the league's health and safety protocols. 

The Lakers, who were winless without Schroder in the lineup in the most recent stretch, listed him as probable for the upcoming bout (h/t ESPN's Dave McMenamin). 

Schroder also shared an Instagram story from assistant coach Phil Handy that said he was "coming soon": 

   

Schroder has been a major in the Lakers' success this season since joining the group from Oklahoma City in a November trade. The 27-year-old is averaging 14.2 points on 44.1 percent shooting, with 4.3 assists through 29 games.

His role became even more important when Anthony Davis was sidelined with a strained Achilles that is expected to keep him out until after the All-Star break. 

But with their second- and third-best players sidelined, the Lakers could only do so much. The four-game stretch without Schroder saw the Lakers drop games against the Brooklyn Nets, Miami Heat, Washington Wizards and Utah Jazz. 

"Dennis carries a big load for us," head coach Frank Vogel said, per Harrison Faigen of SBNation. "He's a big-minute guy that really moves the needle for us on the defensive end with his containment and pressure. That sets the tone for us." 

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In Schroder's absence, Wesley Matthews and Markieff Morris were seeing increased time in the Lakers' backcourt.