PORTLAND, Ore. — The Lakers granted reserve guard Lou Williams a leave of absence after his grandfather recently passed. Williams did not travel with the team for Saturday’s game in Portland and does not plan to play in Sunday’s game against Indiana at Staples Center.
The Lakers expect that Williams will rejoin the team on Monday in Philadelphia before starting an 8-game, 13-day trip.
“We’re all thinking about Lou at this particular time,” Lakers coach Byron Scott said. “We all know that he and his grandfather was very close.”
The Lakers signed the 29-year-old Williams to a three-year deal worth $21 million this past summer. Williams has averaged 12.3 points albeit on 35.1 percent shooting in 24.9 minutes per game off the bench. Yet, Scott attributed some of those struggles on himself by playing him at point guard instead of shooting guard. Scott switched Williams’ role to the off-guard position for the past two games.
“He was trying his very best to play that point guard role. But that’s not him,” Scott said of Williams. “It’s just trying to get him back and be more comfortable in the offense and system. Putting him back to the 2-guard, he’s free and catch-and-shoot and make plays instead of making plays for others. We’ll see how it works out in the end.”