The Los Angeles Lakers have their sights set on NBA championship No. 17, but their path to tying the rival Boston Celtics for most titles in league history got a little tougher Sunday.
The team announced late Sunday night that guard Rajon Rondo suffered a fracture in his right thumb during the team's practice earlier in the day in the Orlando bubble.
He is set for surgery, the team – via their beat reporter Mike Trudell – said, and will "return to full basketball activities in 6 to 8 weeks."
Rondo, 34, has appeared in 48 games for the Lakers this season, making three starts, and averaged 7.1 points and five assists per contest on the year.
In 2008, he was a starter on the Celtics' most recent championship team.
Life inside the bubble with NBA players: Golf, fishing and shotgunning beers
Los Angeles Lakers guard Rajon Rondo during a February game. (Photo: Kyle Terada, USA TODAY Sports)
The Lakers last won the title in 2010 – beating the Celtics – but enter play in Florida with as good a chance as anyone to change that. Behind LeBron James and Anthony Davis, the Lakers stood with the best record in the Western Conference when the NBA season was suspended due to the coronavirus.
Losing Rondo, a key rotation piece who averaged 20.5 minutes per game for the Lakers, will hurt, as will the absence of Avery Bradley, another guard who opted out of the restart. But the team did sign J.R. Smith, a guard who won a championship and appeared in three other NBA Finals while playing with James on the Cleveland Cavaliers.
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