LOS ANGELES — After Josh Okogie left Sunday's game because of an apparent injury to his left leg, Okogie appeared to evade an injury that would keep him out of the lineup when the team announced Okogie just suffering from cramping.
However, when Okogie had the leg looked at closer, that examination revealed a hamstring strain that will keep him out of Tuesday's game against the Clippers and possibly longer.
"That's what initially doctors thought — it was just a cramp," Saunders said. "Then further evaluation revealed it was more of a strain. … That was just the very basic timeline of how that went down."
Okogie is the second starter to suffer an injury in as many games after Karl-Anthony Towns suffered a dislocation in his left wrist in Saturday's game at Utah. Okogie landed awkwardly Sunday after going up for a layup and pounded the floor in frustration after. He needed help coming off the floor. Saunders didn't have a definite timetable for Okgoie's return but said Okogie might be able to resume basketball activities soon.
"We're hopeful that we see over the next couple of days especially, we see more improvement to where he can be doing more things coming up," Saunders said.
Kawhi Leonard missed Tuesday's game for the Clippers because of a mouth laceration.
Okogie's and Towns' absences meant Saunders had to do some adjusting to his lineup. He started D'Angelo Russell, Ricky Rubio, Jarrett Culver, Naz Reid and Malik Beasley on Tuesday and in the process shifted Jake Layman to the bench.
Layman has gotten off to a slow start and didn't have a field goal in the Wolves' first two games of the season.
"Jake's always been a team guy who, when the ball is moving, Jake is an effective player," Saunders said. "When the ball is not moving that makes it tough to really maximize his cutting and maximize his ability to finish in transition as well."
Layman and Towns have found chemistry playing together since last season as Layman is able to use his cutting ability to play off the defensive attention Towns receives, though he said he would be able to do the same things with Reid in the lineup.
"I think Naz doesn't get enough credit for his passing ability as well," Layman said. "He's also a very good, willing passer. I think you guys will see that more as these games go on here."
After Layman hit his first basket of the season against the Lakers, an easy one at the rim, he seemed to let an exhale of relief at getting his first points of the season.
"It was kind of like a sigh of, like, 'Finally.'
Layman finished that game with 10 points on 4 of 8 shooting. He mentioned that with the second unit he would be playing more at the small forward or three position than the four as he was in the starting lineup.
"I think it's a little bit more involved spot within our offense, just in terms of getting the ball within our actions looking to make plays and create for guys," Layman said.
Rookie Anthony Edwards experienced his first set of back-to-back games Saturday and Sunday when the Wolves played in both Utah and Los Angeles. It wasn't an easy adjustment.
"You got to get used to this," Edwards said. "That's the first thing you got to adapt to in the NBA. That's my first one. I still got a whole year. That's the hardest part to me playing a back to back because you get on the plane, land at like 1-something. It's just hard."
On Sunday, Edwards shot just 6-for-21.