Lakers won't rush Lonzo Ball back from MCL sprain


Lonzo Ball is dealing with a minor medial collateral ligament sprain, the Los Angeles Lakers revealed on Saturday.

Ball has missed the Lakers' last NBA six games since suffering what the team originally termed a "minor knee sprain" in an overtime win against the Dallas Mavericks on January 13.

The recovery timeframe for that type of injury is generally one to three weeks, so Ball's return date is still uncertain, but head coach Luke Walton said the Lakers will not rush him back.

"He's feeling better every day," Walton said Saturday. "I wouldn't be surprised if within a couple of days, a week, whatever it is, they say he's ready to start practicing again. But we are still training and approaching it as if it's long-term. We are not making any plans as if he's coming back tomorrow [Sunday].

"He will be back when he is ready to play. When that is, I can't tell you -- whenever his knee feels good. ... We are not going to rush him back. Once he gets cleared, it will be about getting him back to practice and then seeing how he feels after that."

Ball is averaging 10.2 points and 7.1 rebounds and assists per game this season.