It sounds like the Los Angeles Lakers are going to be without Rui Hachimura for roughly a week at minimum after the forward underwent a procure on Friday to repair a nasal fracture.
Hachimura suffered the injury during L.A.’s game against the Dallas Mavericks on Nov. 22.
Lakers injury update from the team:
Lakers forward Rui Hachimura underwent a procedure today to repair a nasal fracture that occurred during the Lakers vs. Mavericks game on Nov. 22. Hachimura will be reevaluated by team doctors in approximately one week.
— Mike Trudell (@LakersReporter) November 24, 2023
Based on the provided timeline, the Lakers will likely need to get through four games before Hachimura gets evaluated again. L.A.’s next four games will come against the Cleveland Cavaliers, Philadelphia 76ers, Detroit Pistons and Oklahoma City Thunder. All of those matchups will come on the road.
The 25-year-old’s absence will certainly be felt, as he has become a key contributor for the Purple and Gold. In 12 games this season, he’s averaging 11.8 points, 3.8 rebounds and 1.0 assist per contest while maintaining efficient shooting clips of 50.5 percent from the field and 42.9 percent from deep.
Hachimura was in concussion protocol for a stretch earlier this season, and with the nasal fracture being another injury to his head, he’s likely tired of nursing injuries to that area of his body. With any luck, his recent procedure won’t sideline him for too long.
The former lottery pick has been making some headlines lately as he continues to prove that he belongs in L.A. His contributions last season helped the Lakers reach the Western Conference Finals, and this season, he has helped the squad to a 9-7 record so far.
The Lakers went 2-2 earlier this season during a four-game stretch without Hachimura. They’ll look to stay afloat without him this time around, starting on Saturday against the Cavs.
L.A.’s usage of LeBron James has been a hot topic this season as the team has struggled to keep his minutes down at times. The hope is that will change once the Lakers get healthier, but when players like Hachimura are banged up, it gets a lot trickier. James, who will soon turn 39 years old, is averaging 33.8 minutes per game this season.
But his minutes certainly haven’t been wasted, with the Lakers 6-2 over their last eight games. They’ll look to keep things rolling on Saturday in Cleveland.