So despite the Lakers' win streak and now best record in the league thanks to the Celtics' recent struggles, all is not perfect in Laker-land. That's because a member of the team's starting lineup missed the game against the Portland Trail Blazers, and is likely to be out a little bit longer.
Luke Waltonis out with sesamoiditis in his right foot, a condition which can best be described as an inflammation of two small bones behind the big toe. Yeah, it hurts. And Luke was hurting as he showed up to Staples Center in street clothes, adhering to the NBA's strict dress code policy.
“It hurts to wear these shoes,” Walton said. “But the NBA has rules about what you can wear.”
So, did Vladimir Radmanovic return to the starting lineup spot that was his before Walton got the call just 11 games ago? Hardly. Trevor Ariza got the start against Portland, and when Vlad-rad did make it into the game as a sub, he started off pretty slowly, committing two quick fouls before getting yanked in the second quarter.
Radmanovic ended up having a decent game though, and honestly, the Lakers need Ariza's energy off the bench. They really should consider reinserting Vlad-Rad into the starting lineup until Luke is able to return, which could be a while given the nature of his injury.