The Los Angeles Lakers recently lost Rajon Rondo to a hand injury. Does head coach Frank Vogel expect him to be back during the playoffs?
As the Los Angeles Lakers prepare for the restart, they recently suffered a loss, as Rajon Rondo hurt his hand in practice. While Rondo isn’t a starter for the Lakers, he does play a significant role as the backup point guard and secondary ball-handler to LeBron James off the bench.
What hurts the Lakers is that they already are without Avery Bradley, who opted out of the restarted season. Point guard wasn’t a position of strength for the Lakers to begin with this season, and now they are down two of them.
Recently, Frank Vogel spoke about Rondo’s injury and if he might return. Here’s what he had to say via Bleacher Report.
"“We expect Rajon to be a part of our playoff run,” the head coach told reporters. “We’re looking at six to eight weeks, puts us somewhere around the first to the second round of the playoffs. We’re very confident he will be able to get back and be a major factor for us.”"
Rondo making it back at some point would be good for the Lakers, but it is hard to imagine what type of shape he would be in after another two months off. Inserting Rondo into the middle of a playoff series or in the playoffs would be very challenging.
What Vogel must try to do now is find a suitable way to replace Rondo. Defensively, that won’t be an issue, as Alex Caruso is a far better defender than Rondo at this point in their careers. However, offensively Rondo is still the secondary playmaker on this team behind LeBron James.
To fill that aspect of the team, the Lakers might have to get creative with Dion Waiters and potentially even J.R. Smith. While Smith has been mostly just a shooter for the last few years of his career, he was a good playmaker for the Knicks. However, that was a while ago, and Smith might not have it in his arsenal anymore.
Even though Rondo has been a frustrating player at times this season, he has still been an important part of the rotation for the Lakers this season. Hopefully, he can come back soon and help them win a championship.