UCLA makes its season debut tonight, down two players. The Bruins play Team Concept in an exhibition game at 7:30 at Pauley Pavilion.
Senior guard Rico Hines is scheduled for arthroscopic knee surgery today and is expected to miss four to six weeks, Coach Steve Lavin said Tuesday.
Hines injured his right knee during practice Friday, and an MRI exam Monday revealed torn cartilage in the knee. Earlier this month, Lavin suspended Hines for two games for hitting teammate Matt Barnes in the head with a chair during a pickup game. Lavin said Hines will serve the suspension after doctors clear him to return.
Freshman forward Josiah Johnson also is expected to miss four to six weeks, because of a stress fracture in his left foot. If rehabilitation for either player takes longer than expected, Lavin said, the Bruins will consider redshirting them.
The injuries leave the Bruins with an eight-man rotation of guards Earl Watson, Ray Young, Billy Knight and Ryan Bailey, forwards Barnes, Jason Kapono and T.J. Cummings and center Dan Gadzuric.
The depth is particularly thin in the frontcourt, where the Bruins will depend on Cummings, a freshman, and hope that Gadzuric can play extensively without getting in foul trouble or getting hurt. He was hampered because of tendinitis in his right knee much of last season, and tendinitis in that knee forced him out of practice Friday. He is expected to play tonight.