The Hornets downgraded center-forward P.J. Washington (right ankle sprain) from probable to play Tuesday to out. Also, the Hornets listed leading scorer Terry Rozier as doubtful to play with left knee tendinitis.
Washington suffered that ankle sprain midway through the third quarter of Sunday’s home loss to the Atlanta Hawks. The injury was serious enough to keep him out of the rest of that game, but it appeared encouraging Monday when the Hornets listed Washington as probable for the Lakers.
Rozier’s injury isn’t considered serious, but the Hornets are playing three games in four nights, with another home game Wednesday against the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Rozier averages 20.3 points and is having a career season. If Rozier doesn’t play, the Hornets will face the Lakers without five of their top six scorers this season. Only Devonte Graham (14 ppg.) would be available. Those other five — Rozier, Hayward, Ball, Monk and Washington — combine to average 80.5 of the Hornets’ 110.9 points per game this season.
The Lakers, coming off a loss to the Knicks in New York Monday, are also severely hampered with injuries — stars LeBron James and Anthony Davis are both out.
The Hornets have three current starters available in point guard Graham and forwards Miles Bridges and Jalen McDaniels. With Washington out, Hornets coach James Borrego could start either Cody Zeller or Bismack Biyombo at center.
If Rozier doesn’t play, the options to start at guard would be Brad Wanamaker, Cody Martin or Caleb Martin.