Lakers' Nick Young is nursing an ankle injury

Lakers' Nick Young is nursing an ankle injury
Nick Young keeps the ball away from Utah guard Elijah Millsap on Jan. 16. (Rick Bowmer / Associated Press)

Nick Young didn't play Tuesday night because of a sprained right ankle, the small forward becoming yet another of the Lakers going down because of an injury.

Young had an MRI test on the ankle Tuesday, which was negative.


"It was good," Young said about the procedure.

The Lakers play Thursday night against the Chicago Bulls at Staples Center.

"I'm trying to play on Thursday," Young said. "We'll see."

Lakers Coach Byron Scott said Young still has some swelling in the ankle and it was still sore.

Young was injured in practice Monday, a night after Scott benched him in the second half against Houston for not playing defense.

The Lakers practice Wednesday, but Scott wasn't sure whether Young would need to practice before he plays again.

"It just depends on how it feels," Scott said about Young's ankle. "If he feels good Thursday afternoon and Thursday night and says he's good to go, then he'll go."

Kobe Bryant's injury saddens Paul Pierce

They have been NBA contemporaries their entire careers, Kobe Bryant doing his job for 19 seasons with the Lakers and Paul Pierce doing his work for 15 of his 17 seasons with the Boston Celtics.

Pierce was in Los Angeles with the Washington Wizards to play the Lakers on Tuesday night and said he was sorry he won't get to face Bryant at least one more time this season.

Bryant is scheduled to have surgery Wednesday for a torn rotator cuff in his right shoulder, putting an end to his 19th season.

"It always saddens me, knowing that Kobe is one of my NBA brothers, we lose due to injury," Pierce said. "It always saddens me because he works so much harder than a lot of these guys. To have a successful career and to go down to an injury, it always hurts."

Bryant, 36, and Pierce, 37, met twice in the NBA Finals.

Pierce won the first battle when he was most valuable player of the 2008 Finals for leading the Celtics over the Lakers in six games.

Bryant won the next championship meeting when he was selected MVP of the 2010 Finals for guiding the Lakers past the Celtics in seven games.

Pierce talked about how fans come to watch Bryant play and how he hopes Bryant can return next season. Bryant has one season and $25 million left on his contract.

"A lot of fans around the league pay to watch Kobe, a lot of fans around the world," Pierce said. "Regardless of how the Lakers are doing or not, he's an icon. He's a player who defined his generation. It's a lot of people that come out here to see him."