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Lakers’ Rajon Rondo still out vs. Hornets after getting precautionary MRI

Rajon Rondo, Lakers

The Los Angeles Lakers will still be without point guard Rajon Rondo when they face the Los Angeles Lakers on Sunday evening.

Rondo missed the first two games of the season with a calf injury. The veteran underwent a precautionary MRI on Saturday night. It confirmed a mild strain:

The Lakers have been starting Avery Bradley and Danny Green together in the backcourt with Rondo out. Lakers head coach Frank Vogel has talked a big game about Rondo’s role when he does return from this injury, suggesting he’s in line for 25-30 minutes per game while also starting some games, depending on matchups.

While that’s a pretty aggressive plan, the Lakers could use Rondo’s playmaking ability to help take pressure off LeBron James, especially with Kyle Kuzma still out. Bradley and Green are spot-up shooters who don’t offer much of anything in terms of playmaking or taking defenders off the dribble, so Rondo brings a different dynamic to the table, even if he’s nowhere near as effective as he was in his prime.

Vogel did turn to Alex Caruso against the Utah Jazz after he received a DNP-CD in the season-opening loss to the Los Angeles Clippers. Caruso didn’t do much in his 20 minutes of action, but he’ll likely continue to see minutes as long as Rajon Rondo is out.