The injuries have already started to pile up for the Los Angeles Lakers with Xavier Henry, Ryan Kelly and Nick Young all dealing with health issues. Even veteran point guard Steve Nash is a bit banged up after tweaking his ankle during practice on Saturday.
With Young on the shelf for six to eight weeks, head coach Byron Scott will have Kobe Bryant help shoulder the load at the small forward position, according to Broderick Turner of the L.A. Times:
Byron Scott said Kobe Bryant will play some 3 with Nick Young out with right thumb injury
— Brad Turner (@BA_Turner) October 4, 2014
Before Young suffered the thumb injury on Friday, there had been some debate about whether Kobe would get some time at the three spot. Wesley Johnson is expected to be named the starting small forward come Oct. 28, but it remains uncertain who Scott will have coming off the bench at that position.
So far, Kobe has been impressive in practice and during scrimmages under Scott. Although Scott is putting the five-time NBA champion through the toughest training camp of his 18-year career, Bryant has been up for the challenge and continues to be an offensive force when going up against his teammates.
Losing Young to the thumb injury for as much as two months will prove costly for the Lakers. Kobe will likely have to shoulder more of the scoring load with no one coming off the bench able to provide the same kind of offensive production as Young.
INJURY: Lakers Nick Young Tears Ligament In Left Thumb