Lonzo Ball carried off court after scary ankle injury, X-rays reveal no fractures

Lonzo Ball exited the Los Angeles Lakers’ game early on Saturday after what appeared to be a serious left ankle injury suffered during a collision with Houston Rockets forward James Ennis.

Ball was immediately carried off the court by teammates and reportedly had to be taken for X-rays in a wheelchair. The Lakers gave a preliminary diagnosis of a sprained ankle, then transferred the 21-year-old to a local hospital because Houston’s X-ray machine was broken.

That diagnosis was backed up when X-rays revealed no fractures, though it’s still unknown how many games Ball will have to miss. The Lakers will likely need Ball to undergo an MRI to reveal the extent of the damage to his ligaments.

Assuming Ball has to miss time, it would interrupt one of the stronger stretches of the young point guard’s career. He had been averaging 16.7 points, 8.0 assists and 7.7 rebounds in his last three games entering Saturday, and looked on his way to another strong game with eight points and 11 assists before his injury in the third quarter.

Ball entered Saturday averaging 9.9 points, 5.3 assists and 5.4 rebounds per game as he tries to solidify himself as a key building block in Los Angeles.

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LeBron James and Lonzo Ball
CLEVELAND, OH - DECEMBER 14: Lonzo Ball #2 of the Los Angeles Lakers listens to LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers after the game at Quicken Loans Arena on December 14, 2017 in Cleveland, Ohio. The Cavaliers defeated the Lakers 121-112. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Dec 14, 2017; Cleveland, OH, USA; Los Angeles Lakers guard Lonzo Ball (2) defends Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) in the first quarter at Quicken Loans Arena. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 14, 2017; Cleveland, OH, USA; Los Angeles Lakers guard Lonzo Ball (2) defends Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) in the first quarter at Quicken Loans Arena. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 14, 2017; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) throws a pass between Los Angeles Lakers guard Lonzo Ball (2) and forward Brandon Ingram (14) in the second quarter at Quicken Loans Arena. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 14, 2017; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) grabs a pass in front of Los Angeles Lakers guard Lonzo Ball (2) in the second quarter at Quicken Loans Arena. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports
CLEVELAND, OH - DECEMBER 14: LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers and Lonzo Ball #2 of the Los Angeles Lakers embrace during the first half at Quicken Loans Arena on December 14, 2017 in Cleveland, Ohio. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - DECEMBER 14: Lonzo Ball #2 of the Los Angeles Lakers defends LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers on December 14, 2017 at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2017 NBAE (Photo by David Liam Kyle/NBAE via Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - DECEMBER 14: Lonzo Ball #2 of the Los Angeles Lakers shakes hands with LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers after the game at Quicken Loans Arena on December 14, 2017 in Cleveland, Ohio. The Cavaliers defeated the Lakers 121-112. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
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Losing Ball would obviously be dreadful news for a Lakers team trying to tread water as it awaits the return of LeBron James, who has been out since Christmas with a groin injury.

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