Drummond’s Lakers debut cut short by toe injury

  • Lakers and NBA reporter for ESPN.
  • Covered the Lakers and NBA for ESPNLosAngeles.com from 2009-14, the Cavaliers from 2014-18 for ESPN.com and the NBA for NBA.com from 2005-09.

LOS ANGELES — You could say Andre Drummond stubbed his toe making his way out of the starting blocks in his Los Angeles Lakers debut. Literally.

The newly acquired Lakers center exited Wednesday’s 112-97 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks with a bruised right big toe in the third quarter and did not return. Drummond received X-rays on the toe that came back negative, according to the team.

It was Drummond’s first game action since Feb. 12, after which his former team, the Cleveland Cavaliers, pulled him from the rotation while searching for a trade partner to take on the nine-year veteran’s $29.5 million salary. Drummond was waived last week when the Cavs couldn’t find a deal to their liking, and he signed with the Lakers on Sunday.

Despite the lengthy layoff, Drummond said, “right now, I’m probably in the best shape I can be in” earlier this week when looking ahead to suiting up for the Lakers for the first time.

Drummond started the game in a pair of Air Jordan XI IE sneakers and swapped them out for a pair of LeBron 16 Lows, before checking out of the game with 7:55 remaining in the third quarter and limping to the bench. Before heading to the locker room, Drummond removed one of his sneakers, revealing a wrap around the big toe and second toe on his right foot.

Drummond finished with four points on 2-for-6 shooting (0-for-2 on free throws), one rebound, two assists, one block, three turnovers and four fouls in 14 minutes.

It was not the debut he and the Lakers were hoping for, however, there was a flash of success in his initial shift as a Laker. L.A. outscored Milwaukee by seven points in the seven minutes Drummond played in the first quarter.

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