Xavier Henry to play despite torn ligament in left wrist that needs surgery

The torn ligament in Xavier Henry’s wrist will require surgery. But he will still play, including the Lakers’ game Tuesday against the New York Knicks at Staples Center.

“The good news is it’s torn so I feel like with that mindset, I can’t do too much worse to it,” Henry said. “So I’ll go out and be myself.”

Henry said he feels pain regardless of whether he shoots or handles the ball. But he vowed that will not change his shooting approach, his aggressiveness level or his fear that opposing players will try to hurt his hand.

“I could care less. I play hard,” Henry said. “I do more damage to myself than they do to me. I’m okay with that. It doesn’t matter to me.”

Henry said he injured his wrist in the Lakers’ loss Friday to the Washington Wizards in the third quarter after falling to the basket. He sat out of the Lakers’ win Sunday over Orlando. Henry also sat out 28 games this season because of a bone bruise and cartilage abnormality in his right knee. But with Henry entering the final year of his contract, he wants to build on his 10.1 points per game average in the Lakers’ 13 remaining games.

With Steve Nash doubtful to play against New York because of nerve irritation in his back, Henry could play backup point guard duties while also splitting time at small forward with Wesley Johnson, Nick Young and Kent Bazemore.

“You can think of it two ways. You can think, ‘Why me and get surgery,’” Henry said. “Or you can think ‘I have to get surgery anyway so I might as well just play hard.’”

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Follow L.A. Daily News Lakers beat writer Mark Medina on Twitter and on Facebook. E-mail him at mark.medina@langnews.com

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