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Cam Reddish rejoins Lakers’ lineup after month-long injury absence – Daily News

LOS ANGELES — Lakers wing Cam Reddish was back in the lineup for Wednesday night’s game against the Clippers after a month-long absence because of a sprained right ankle.

Reddish missed the Lakers’ previous 14 games after suffering the ankle injury the last time the Lakers and Clippers played each other, a 127-116 Clippers victory on Jan. 23.

“Just balance out the rotation,” Coach Darvin Ham said of Reddish’s return. “We looked at it [Tuesday]we looked at it again [Wednesday] morning so we feel comfortable with where everyone is slotted and we’ll just see what happens. See what the game dictates.”

With Reddish’s return, the Lakers regained one of their best perimeter athletes and defenders. He subbed in alongside Taurean Prince at the 4:19 mark of the first quarter for his playing time, a nine-minute first-half stint that ended midway through the second quarter.

His return also meant another shake-up to the team’s rotation, with guard Max Christie not being in the first-half rotation after averaging 15.7 minutes over the previous three games. He only played five seconds in the first half, subbing in at the end of the first quarter for defensive purposes.

The Lakers leaned on smaller lineups for significant stretches of the first half, including playing LeBron James at center alongside Reddish, D’Angelo Russell, Spencer Dinwiddie and Taurean Prince.

“It’s just a matter of looking at what we have,” Ham said. “Reintroducing someone into the lineup, obviously, that’s gonna come with parameters. So everyone just needs to be ready. You never know when your number is gonna be called. Our coaches do a phenomenal job of keeping our guys ready, watching film so they know what’s supposed to be happening on both sides of the ball. And you just have to stay ready.

“There’s no secret pill or anything like that that’s gonna make everything clear-cut all the time. We have a team full of really, really good players. And so trying to find those right combinations, it’s just … you have to rediscover that rhythm when you’re reintroducing a Cam Reddish or someone of that nature. It was [Jarred Vanderbilt] when he was coming back a few weeks ago. That’s just a natural, organic circumstance. So just trying to manage that as best as possible. But the message is just stay ready. You never know.”

TOUGH HOME STRETCH

Wednesday’s game kicked off a stretch of 11 out of 12 games in Los Angeles, with the lone game the Lakers aren’t playing at Crypto.com Arena over the next 3½ weeks being a road game against the Sacramento Kings on March 13.

Seven of the Lakers’ next nine games, including Wednesday’s game, come against teams above them in the Western Conference standings.

The Lakers were playing on the first night of a back-to-back on Wednesday, with a Thursday matchup against the Washington Wizards awaiting them.

“We just come prepared with what we have available to us in terms of our roster and take it one game at a time,” Ham said. “We’re not even thinking about what’s down the road. It’s just every day – each and every day – trying to maximize that as much as possible.”

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