Archive for the 'Players' Category

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Gasol Out vs. SAC



Young Draining Triples

Portland Trail Blazers v Los Angeles LakersWhile his teammates were struggling to get going on offense in Tuesday’s loss to Portland, Nick Young … was not. He drained 15 of his 26 shots – including his first eight – to drop 40 points, thanks in no small part to a bunch of three-pointers.

Young hit six of his 13 three-point attempts, cooling down only in the second half after he hit three of his first four, keeping pace with a recent trend of half of his FGA’s coming from three.

Since returning from injury on March 21, Young’s averaging 20.9 ppg off the pine (up from 16.8 prior), and was attempting 48.2% of his FG’s from 3 before 13 of his 26 vs. POR. He’s hitting 46.3 percent of his bombs in that stretch (35.3% prior). Below is a shot chart of his efficiency from beyond the arc in his last seven games, courtesy of NBA.com/stats.

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That 40-spot is second only to the 42 points Jodie Meeks put on Oklahoma City on March 9.

Gasol Probable to Play vs. Portland

ts_140331paugasol670After missing the last four games because of vertigo, Pau Gasol practiced in full on Monday and is being called probable for Tuesday’s game against Portland.

“We’ll see,” Gasol said of his prospects playing vs. Portland. “We’ll see how my body reacts when I get up tomorrow after the exercise today. I’d love to.”

In his last game action vs. Orlando last Sunday, Gasol played 19 minutes, but did not come out for the second half after experiencing dizziness and nausea.

“It was frustrating,” Gasol said. “You don’t really know why it happened, you can only guess after all the tests are done. So, I just had to let it calm down and get back to a normal life and get through a workout and practice like I did today. It wasn’t any contact, but I got through it pretty good. I’m not any worse than when I started, so that’s a good thing.”

Gasol had been sidelined 10 games earlier this year due to a strained groin and an upper respiratory infection. The doctors could not determine, however, if his condition is in any way related to the illness that affected him during the first half of the season. The Spaniard recalled post practice how he’s felt over the last week while trying to recover.

“Just really light-headed, dizzy and drowsy state for five or six days at home without really moving much,” Gasol said. “Just laying and letting my system readjust. It was scary. It was a scary moment for me and my family and the ones that love me.”

In his place, Chris Kaman was inserted into the starting lineup after not playing the previous 10 games. Kaman is coming off a 28-point, 17-rebound, six-assist outing vs. Phoenix.

Although Gasol might return to the court, the Lakers will likely be without Xavier Henry and Jordan Farmar. Henry (wrist and knee), who has missed the last two games, is being called “doubtful.” Henry suffered a torn ligament in his wrist against Washington on Mar. 21 and missed the following game vs. Orlando, but suited up vs. New York and at Milwaukee. Henry also missed nearly two months earlier this season with a bone bruise in his right knee.

Farmar, who was diagnosed with a moderate groin strain on Mar. 18, has been sidelined the last seven games. According to team spokesman John Black, Farmar will see a doctor either later today or Tuesday, at which point an update will be given on his status. He is being called “doubtful” vs. Portland.

Marshall, Meeks Plead Fashion Crime

At shootaround on Thursday in Milwaukee, Kendall Marshall and Jodie Meeks both had something to say about Kent Bazemore’s pants.

Lakers at the Movies

After landing in Milwaukee, the Lakers watched a prescreening of “Noah,” set to be released in theaters on Friday.

Nick Young, again, went straight to the concession stands.

Injury Update: Gasol, Henry and Nash

ts_140324xavierhenry670Lakers Injury Report sponsored by UCLA Health SystemPau Gasol, who did not play the second half vs. Orlando because of dizziness and nausea, is being considered doubtful for Tuesday’s game vs. New York.

Should Gasol not be able to play tomorrow, coach Mike D’Antoni said Chris Kaman would start in his place.

Henry Expected to Play Through Pain


Another Laker who is battling an injury of his own is Xavier Henry, who injured his left wrist on a fall during the third quarter vs. Washington. Henry maintains he will play through the pain, however.

“I was going to play anyway,” Henry said. “The good news is it’s (torn). I feel like with that mindset, I can’t do too much worse to it, so now it’s just go out there and be myself.”

The Kansas product said he feels discomfort, regardless of whether he’s on the court or not, but believes there is no reason to sit out as long as he can tolerate it.

“(I feel pain) all day,” he said. “It doesn’t matter if I have the ball or if I don’t. It hurts. If I can play with it, I’m going to play.”

Nash’s Return Questionable
Steve Nash, who returned vs. Washington after being sidelined the previous 15 games, also did not suit up on Sunday.

He has played in 11 games overall this year, battling the same nerve issues since last year after fracturing his lower leg in the second game at Portland on Halloween.

“We’ll check and see tomorrow, but probably doubtful at this time just to be cautious,” D’Antoni said. “He worked out on his own (today). He said he’s feeling better, but doesn’t know. He’ll push a little bit tomorrow morning and then we’ll make a decision.”

Injury Update: Pau Gasol

Houston Rockets v Los Angeles LakersLakers Injury Report sponsored by UCLA Health SystemPau Gasol did not play the second half of the Lakers-Magic game because of dizziness and nausea. According to team spokesman John Black, Gasol received three liters of IV fluid and spent the night in the hospital for precautionary observation.

“He was dizzy in the first half, went back in the dressing room, came back, finished the half,” coach Mike D’Antoni said postgame. “They were trying to give him an IV and he was real dizzy and he couldn’t go.”

Prior to Sunday’s game, Gasol had posted four double-doubles in the last five games, and was averaging 20.8 points, 9.4 rebounds, 3.2 assists, plus 1.7 blocks in March.

An update on Gasol’s condition will be given sometime on Monday.

Injury Update: Xavier Henry

Washington Wizards v Los Angeles LakersLakers Injury Report sponsored by UCLA Health SystemXavier Henry, who injured his left wrist in Friday’s game vs. Washington, underwent an MRI and the results showed a torn ligament. He will be examined by a hand specialist on Monday and an estimated timetable for his return will be given at that time.

Earlier at Saturday’s practice, coach Mike D’Antoni believed Henry to be a game-time decision for Sunday’s game vs. Orlando, pending the MRI results.

Henry played 23 minutes on Friday and recorded 12 points, three rebounds, two assists and two steals. He was coming off one of his best games of the season vs. San Antonio when he poured in a team-high 24 points.

The Kansas product had previously missed almost two months with a bone bruise and an abnormality of the lateral meniscus before returning at Portland on Mar. 3.

Sacre’s Defensive Impact

San Antonio Spurs v Los Angeles LakersTrailing 22-13 at the 5:18 mark of the first quarter, coach Mike D’Antoni inserted Robert Sacre, Xavier Henry and Kent Bazemore into the game.

That trio single-handedly sparked a Lakers rally and cut what was once an 11-point deficit to just a single point by halftime. In 11 first-half minutes, the Sacre-Henry-Bazemore group finished as a plus-11 and combined for 29 points (19 from Henry), 13 rebounds, six assists and three steals.

“Sacre is a big energy guy, always someone you can rely on to give you confidence to help you out and just being a good teammate,” Nick Young said. “To see him out there and all the hard work he put in – getting shots (up) and film after practice – you love to see a guy like that blossom.”

Come the fourth quarter, D’Antoni played Henry and Bazemore the entire 12 minutes, while Sacre was paired with Pau Gasol down the stretch. In 26 minutes off the bench, the big man from Gonzaga grabbed a career-high 11 rebounds, while anchoring the Lakers defense down low.

“He definitely came in and changed the complexion right off the bat,” D’Antoni said. “That’s what we kind of look at, not individual stats. On a bad team, somebody has to score 20 points, so who cares? But he came in, changed the complexion, picked up our defense, energy and talking and did a lot of good things.”

In the second quarter, the Spurs were limited to 35.7 percent field goals and 23 points, after 35 points and a 58.3 percent mark in the opening frame. Much of that was attributed to Sacre’s presence defensively. Even alongside Gasol, D’Antoni liked that pairing up front enough to where the coaching staff will look to use that combo more down the stretch of the season.

“We saw it in practice the other day,” D’Antoni said. “Robert has improved enough to where we can still score with those two bigs on the floor and our defense does pick up. It’s something we’ll try going forward with.”

Young Poised to Return

Los Angeles Lakers v Miami HeatHaving completed a week’s worth of practices without a setback of the injured left knee that’s kept Nick Young out of 16 of the last 17 games, the swing man is expected to return for Friday night’s game against Washington.

“I’ll be out there against the Wizards,” said Young after Thursday’s practice. “I’ve been waiting. It’s tough to sit in the back and watch these games. I’ve been wanting to get out there from the time the second half of the season started.”

Young suffered a non-displaced fracture of the patella and a bone bruise after hyperextending his knee at Cleveland on Feb. 5. He returned to play 20 minutes off the bench against Brooklyn on Feb. 23, but has been out since after experiencing further soreness.

Mike D’Antoni said Young will return to his role off the bench, but tempered expectations for Friday evening.

“It depends on him,” said the coach. “You never know. He could be rusty, he could be rusty the third game, the first game, the second game, the second half, who knows. You just play it by ear and as long as he’s playing well, then he’ll stay on the floor. If not, then we’ll sub him in and out. It’s good to get him back and good to get him back in the flow.”

D’Antoni suggested that Jordan Hill could also be available to use against the Wizards, but will see how his knee responds to Thursday’s practice at Friday’s shootaround.

Young, who ranks second on the team in scoring at 16.8 points per game (Pau Gasol, 17.8), appears good to go.

“I’m feeling good,” he said. “I had a couple days to get a couple practices in and test it out and see how I feel out there.”