The depth the Los Angeles Lakers had at power forward took a big hit when Larry Nance Jr. broke his left hand in the team’s loss to the Portland Trail Blazers.
Early reports are that Nance, who was starting for the Lakers at power forward and averaging 10.6 points and 7.5 rebounds per game prior to his injury, will miss around 4-6 weeks following his surgery to repair his hand.
It sounds like the Lakers won’t have to wait longer than that if early indications are to be believed, with Nance saying on Twitter that his surgery “went well” while thanking fans for their support:
Surgery went well, I’ll be back in no time! Thanks to everyone for the well wishes! They’re greatly appreciated!
— Larry Nance Jr (@Larrydn22) November 4, 2017
There aren’t many silver linings about a broken hand, but it was at the very least Nance’s non-shooting one, and if the surgery went off without a hitch then there is every reason to believe he’ll be fine within the expected window of time for recovery.
Fortunately for the Lakers, power forward is arguably the position they were most equipped to survive an injury at. Kyle Kuzma was moved into the starting lineup in Nance’s place, and the promising young rookie responded with 17 points in the first half before finishing with 21, one point away from the career-high he had against the Portland Trail Blazers the night before.
Julius Randle can also pick up additional minutes at the four in Nance’s absence, and the Lakers could even dust off Luol Deng if they absolutely needed an extra body in the rotation at power forward.
Basically, the Lakers can totally handle things while Nance is out as long as none of their other fours get hurt, but based on his update, they likely won’t have to wait much longer than that 4-6 week window.
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