Lakers News: Kyle Kuzma Will Not Play vs. Heat Because of Calf Injury

Blake SchusterSenior Analyst IIIApril 8, 2021

Los Angeles Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma dribbles during an NBA basketball game against the Los Angeles Clippers Sunday, April 4, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press

Los Angeles Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma will miss Thursday's game against the Miami Heat due to a calf strain

Head coach Frank Vogel said the 25-year-old suffered the injury Tuesday against the Toronto Raptors, when he logged 35 minutes and posted eight points and four rebounds. An MRI performed Thursday revealed the extent of the injury, which was diagnosed as a Grade 1 calf strain. 

The Lakers dealt with a rash of injuries and exhaustion leading up to the All-Star break, which wasn't too concerning given they are defending the NBA title after the shortest offseason in league history. 

Anthony Davis remains sidelined with an Achilles injury, and LeBron James is working through a high-ankle sprain. That left Kuzma with a bit more responsibility on the floor lately. Now, he'll be unavailable, too.

The forward has remained an integral part of the Lakers rotation, especially with Davis out since Feb. 16.

Through 50 contests, Kuzma is averaging 12.6 points on 43.4 percent shooting with 6.8 rebounds and 1.7 assists.

Look for head coach Frank Vogel to give extra minutes to Markieff Morris, Montrezl Harrell and Talen Horton-Tucker, though the latter will also be out Thursday as he serves a suspension for his role in an altercation with the Raptors.

The sooner Kuzma returns, the stronger Los Angeles' title defense becomes.