The Los Angeles Lakers will enter their final preseason game on Friday night against the Los Angeles Clippers short-handed one last time as both Lonzo Ball and Andrew Bogut will be out tonight.
Lonzo Ball (ankle) and Andrew Bogut (groin) will not play tonight.
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) October 13, 2017
In addition to that, Luke Walton announced Larry Nance, Jr. would start the final preseason game at power forward.
Larry Nance Jr. will start again at power forward for the Lakers.
— Ohm Youngmisuk (@NotoriousOHM) October 13, 2017
Bogut’s absence tonight means he will have missed the entire preseason, though he has been an active participant in practice throughout much of the preseason.
Ball, meanwhile, played in just two preseason games before twisting his ankle against the Denver Nuggets. The good news for Ball and the Lakers is it sounds like he will be ready for the season-opener.
Will Lonzo play in next Thursday's opener? "Sure, yeah. I'm confident," Luke Walton said after a little pause.
— Mike Bresnahan (@Mike_Bresnahan) October 13, 2017
As for the battle at power forward, Friday marks the third-straight game Nance has started at power forward over Julius Randle. The latter has excelled this preseason as he sits second in points per game this preseason at 13.0 while leading the team in rebounding at 7.4 boards per game.
Whether this preseason experiment translates into the regular season remains to be seen, but for now it appears Luke Walton has liked what he has seen from Nance in the starting lineup so far.