Lakers’ Byron Scott curious to see Marcelo Huertas’ impact in a game
Coach Byron Scott has gotten a look at 18 of 19 Lakers in preseason action.
That leaves international veteran (and NBA rookie) Marcelo Huertas, who has been sidelined because of a hamstring strain.
“In the scrimmages that we had, he was very good,” Scott said after practice Saturday. “He’s a true point guard that looks to pass that ball. I’m very curious to see how he plays in a real, live basketball game.”
Huertas said he doesn’t expect to be held out much longer.
“It’s better. It’s not 100% still, but there’s a chance I’ll play tomorrow,” he said of his injury. “It doesn’t hurt at all, it just scared me a little bit. To force it if it’s not 100%, and get a bigger injury and be out for a two or three weeks, it’s not worth it.
Unable to practice, the Brazilian guard used his time to get his work visa issues resolved in Vancouver, Canada.
Rookie guard D’Angelo Russell suffered a glute injury early into the Lakers’ second exhibition game, depleting the team’s depth at the point.
Second-year guard Jordan Clarkson took on the bulk of the responsibility at the position. Scott used combination guards Lou Williams and rookie Michael Frazier in reserve.
“So far it’s been OK,” said Scott. “It could get better. We can get better in every area of the game right now, but I am very curious right now about one specific player, and that’s Marcelo.”
The team is hopeful Huertas can stabilize the second unit.
“He’s a very, very good floor leader,” said Scott. “He’s a gutsy, pesky-type guy. He doesn’t back down. He’s going to try to guard you to the best of his ability, and he’s a guy that can make plays for you.”
Huertas, whose $525,093 contract isn’t guaranteed, is eager to show what he do.
“I’m trying to adjust as fast as I can,” he said. “Bring a little bit of my experience and my knowledge of the game so I can help the team ... organizing the team on offense and creating open shots.”
All 19 Lakers were able to go through a light practice Saturday, although Brandon Bass (knee), Russell and Huertas are all listed as doubtful for the team’s exhibition game Sunday against Maccabi Haifa at Staples Center.
“Tomorrow we’ll go through our regular routine as far as getting ready for the game, and we’ll see how those guys feel,” said Scott.
Email Eric Pincus at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @EricPincus
All things Lakers, all the time.
Get all the Lakers news you need in Dan Woike's weekly newsletter.
You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.