After a long practice on Sunday morning, assembled reporters learned that Andrew Bynum is absolutely ready to play on Tuesday, that Pau Gasol may not be and that Ron Artest is very happy to be in L.A.
Before the round up, here’s the audio from Head Coach Phil Jackson:
BYNUM READY TO GO
Jackson said that Bynum “did well” and “had no problems out there” in practice, after the young center had missed consecutive preseason games while recovering from minor shoulder and leg issues.
“I felt good,” he said. “I came in early yesterday and got a lot done … I’m excited for (Tuesday’s game). I want to get the ring, go through the ceremony, then take care of business at night time and really go at (the Clippers).”
GASOL STILL WORKING ON SORE HAMSTRING
Gasol, on the other hand, spent the day doing only cardio, though he was in good spirits when speaking to reporters. He reiterated what had been reported on Friday in San Diego: while his hamstring injury isn’t something that he’d call serious, he wants to make sure he’s not pushing it too hard, too fast.
“It’s most important that I get myself healthy at this point in the year so I can go through the whole year,” said the Spaniard. “If I put myself in a risky situation then I won’t be helping my team in the long run.”
Jackson seemed to share Gasol’s sentiments.
“We have three days in between our first game and our second one,” said Jackson. so if worse comes to worse, we have a really great replacement for (Gasol) with Lamar Odom.”
RON ARTEST: TEAM PLAYER
Skeptics that had expected Ron Artest to be doing his own thing on the court for L.A. saw a collective counterexample from the forward throughout eight preseason games.
The evidence is in the statistics, which showed Artest taking fewer shots per game than five other Lakers, and found him placed second on the team only to point guard Jordan Farmar in assists.
In 25 minutes per game, Artest averaged 7.9 points, 3.8 assists, 4.3 rebounds and 1.38 steals.
After Sunday’s practice, he had this to say about preseason play: