The Los Angeles Lakers squeaked out a close win over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Tuesday night. They also may have very closely avoided a scary injury.
In the first half of the game, Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma was poked in the eye on the defensive end and exited the game due to the bleeding that ensued. Kuzma went straight to the locker room and only came back to the bench after halftime. He never re-entered the game with his right eye nearly swollen shut.
According to head coach Frank Vogel, Kuzma suffered an eye abrasion but was cleared to return. Vogel felt that the risk of bringing the injured third-year pro back into the game was not worth the benefits in a game that the Lakers mostly controlled.
Vogel said Kyle Kuzma has an eye abrasion, and opted not to use him despite his technically being available to return after he was cleared by the medical staff.
— Mike Trudell (@LakersReporter) November 20, 2019
The good news for the Lakers and for Kuzma is that eye abrasions (which are basically scratching of the cornea) tend to heal quickly so the forward could be back on the court soon. The Lakers have not given an official status for Kuzma yet but they are expected to give an update on the situation on Wednesday following further testing.
The Lakers’ next game is a rematch against the Thunder in Oklahoma City on Friday.