There has been a key development in Jared Dudley's current MCL injury and it comes in the form of the veteran deciding against going under the knife to address the problem. As it is, however, the Los Angeles Lakers guard/forward remains without a firm timetable to return.
This report comes via Dave McMenamin of ESPN:
Jared Dudley says he will not pursue surgery on his torn MCL, as it would keep him out 4-6 months. He says he will continue to rehab around the team. He hopes to be healthy by the playoffs, to provide spot minutes. In the meantime, he will continue to be a locker room presence.
— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) March 17, 2021
This decision makes a lot of sense for Dudley. He has taken a more present approach to his current injury, which at this point in his career, appears to be the right thing to do.
Dudley is turning 36 in July, and given how his level of production has dropped significantly over the past few seasons, there's no denying that he's already on the tail end of his career. This could very well be the last season Dudley ends up playing in, so he is doing everything he can to make sure that an injury is not going to end his career. It's not going to be an easy road ahead for the 6-foot-6 forward, though, as MCL injuries can be particularly problematic.
Dudley's knee problem comes at a terrible time for the Lakers, who have been decimated by injuries. Along with Anthony Davis who is dealing with a calf issue, the defending champs are also missing a number of key guys right now due to respective injuries/issues. Marc Gasol and Kostas Antetokounmpo have been placed on the league's health and safety protocols, while Alex Caruso has been ruled out indefinitely due to a head injury.
The Lakers take on the Minnesota Timberwolves on Tuesday night, but despite the injury crisis, LeBron James and Co. are still fully expected to emerge with a victory against the league-worst Wolves.