Important Jarred Vanderbilt injury update

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Lakers forward Jarred Vanderbilt has been out since February 1st with a foot injury. Ahead of the Lakers-Pelicans Play-In game on Tuesday, Vanderbilt’s availability remains unlikely. 

Despite his absence, Jarred Vanderbilt has been diligently working towards a return, gradually increasing his conditioning to light jogging. However, according to Jovan Buha, he is still awaiting clearance for on-court contact drills.

Buha stated, “I’ve been told that Vando has ramped up his conditioning into light jogging, but he has not returned to on-court contact activity yet, which means he’s not going to play Sunday in New Orleans. Even playing in the play-in seems unlikely. So if Vando returns, it’s appearing as if it’s going to have to be in the first round of the playoffs on the early side. So maybe the Lakers get him back for a matchup against the Timberwolves or the Thunder, or maybe even mid-series.”

This update signals that Vanderbilt is progressing toward a return but won’t be ready for the Play-In game.

The most likely timeline for Vanderbilt would be to get him back sometime during the first round. His return will be dependent on when he is cleared for on-court contact.

Darvin Ham and the Lakers front office have been limited with the information on Vanderbilt.

Should Jarred Vanderbilt make a comeback in the playoffs, the Purple and Gold will gain a significant boost in defense and size. In his 29 games this season, Vanderbilt averaged 5/5/1 with 1.2 steals.

He is the LakeShow’s best point-of-attack defender and has the versatility to defend every position. 

Lakers fans can hope for a Vanderbilt return at some point in the postseason, but it won’t be before the Lakers-Pelicans Play-In matchup on Tuesday.

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