Sasha Vujacic Post-Game
Phil Jackson Post-Game
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Jackson expects Vujacic to see significant time after missing the previous seven preseason games with his ankle injury, while Bryant will play just enough to keep his hyperextended knee – which is apparently close to 100 percent already – loose.
While some question whether Bryant should even test the knee in a relatively meaningless preseason game, Jackson said that Bryant knows his body well enough at this stage of his career to make such a decision.
Certainly both pieces of information regarding Kobe and Sasha are good news for the Lakers. On the other hand, forward Josh Powell will be held out of tonight’s game due to the same strained left hamstring that caused him to miss Thursday night’s win against Charlotte. Powell did tell me that he’s “definitely” going to be ready for the season opener, and we’ll see if the training staff concurs next week.
After consecutive impressive outputs this past weekend at STAPLES Center, spirits were up at the Lakers’ practice facility on Monday.
The most pressing news: Sasha Vujacic completed his first practice since the first day of training camp. After the workout, we heard from Phil Jackson, Andrew Bynum and Vujacic, interviews you can watch on our video page.
Here are your Phil bullet points:
A note about Bynum: He said that while his knee’s feeling good, he did have a little bit of swelling a week ago, and left it at that.
Stay tuned for a preview of Tuesday night’s action in San Diego against the Charlotte Bobcats with Derek Fisher serving as analyst/assistant coach.
Sasha Vujacic participated through the entirety of Monday’s practice, saying that he had a little discomfort in his ankle but no sharp pain. He didn’t want to push off it too much, and won’t play in L.A.’s preseason game in San Diego on Tuesday. However, he does feel good about his progress and will see how the ankle responds to a day’s worth of activity.
Vladimir Radmanovic sprained the middle finger on his left hand Sunday night against Toronto, though x-rays were negative. Lakers spokesman John Black said Vlad went through the first portion of practice on Monday and is day-to-day.
Lakers guard Sasha Vujacic will be shut down from basketball activities for 10-to-14 days due to a small avulsion fracture in his ankle.
The fracture is thought to have been aggravated when Vujacic sprained his ankle, though he said he felt no pain in his ankle whatsoever before the sprain. Vujacic also suggested that he will give his ankle a shot in seven, not 10 days, but L.A.’s training staff will surely make that call.
“I’ve played with (a hurt ankle) before so it’s nothing new,” said Vujacic. “Right now it’s just a little bit frustrating … I’ll come back as soon as I can.”
You can watch a post-practice interview with Sasha on our video page.
The Slovenian guard went on to say that he’d like to play in one or two preseason games, but L.A.’s final games come against Charlotte and Oklahoma City on the 23rd and 24th, the first just nine days away.
L.A.’s season opener against Portland is set for Tuesday, Oct. 28, 14 days from today.
Sasha Vujacic spent another day away from live action as he nurses the sore ankle that he suffered early in training camp. Vujacic put up some shots today but wasn’t able to get in any of the scrimmages with his teammates.
Luke Walton on the other hand is progressing nicely. “Luke’s playing. He’s playing pretty well,” said Head Coach Phil Jackson. Walton could be available for this weekend’s shootout at STAPLES Center.
- An MRI from a few days ago revealed that Sasha Vujacic does have a sprained ankle, as was thought to be the case.
- Jordan Farmar missed practice with a sore right foot.
- D.J. Mbenga practiced for the first half of the session but sat out the second with a sore right heel.
Which Laker do you think hit the game-winning shot in the final contest of five-on-five drills during Wednesday’s practice at L.A.’s facility?
Yup, it was Kobe.
For the first time this preseason, we watched the final 20 or so minutes of practice before hearing from a few of the guys and head coach Phil Jackson afterwards.
Quick teaser – Check back tomorrow to hear what Lamar Odom thinks about the WWE, 50 Cent mixed tapes and v-neck shirts. But until then, here’s a quick A through E summary from today:
A) Sasha Vujacic and Luke Walton both competed in practice, and both looked improved on their respectively hurt ankles. Vujacic in particular was moving quite well laterally and up-and-down, and told assembled media after practice that he would be with the team in Fresno on Thursday.
B) At the end of practice, the Lakers split up into three teams (purple, white and green) and played games to 15 by ones and twos (winner stayed). The purple team featured Bryant, Odom, Pau Gasol, Jordan Farmar and Vladimir Radmonivic, with Andrew Bynum rotating between the purples and the whites. That white team also included Vujacic, Trevor Ariza, Josh Powell and Brandon Heath, while the greens featured Walton, Coby Karl, D.J. Mbenga, Sun Yue and C.J. Giles. Needless to say, the purples won the two games we watched. Bryant’s game winner over the greens came from about 20 feet out with Sun defending.
C) Pau Gasol grabbed a mop to wipe some perspiration off the floor. That was fun.
D) If you had no idea who anyone was while watching a Lakers practice (like if you were from Wasilla), it would still take about 10 seconds to figure out who runs the show. It’s Kobe. Mentally, physically, vocally – Bryant sets the tone. And guess who won the wind sprints at the end of practice?
E) Videos of Jackson, Bynum and Vujacic after practice are available on lakers.com. The Lakers are in Fresno tomorrow to face the Clippers, and we’ll be there live with a running game diary. Later.
During Wednesday’s morning session guard Sasha Vujacic saw improvement in the ankle that he sprained Monday night.
“Well I can walk so that’s a good thing. I’m not limping anymore. But the only thing of concern is on the side there is a tendon, so we’ll see how long it will take,” Vujacic said. “Hopefully just a couple of days.”
While the limp is gone, Sasha still found it hard to move laterally and therefore did not practice with the rest of his teammates this morning.
“The treatments are going good so no concern there.”