According to the Los Angeles Times’ Mike Bresnahan, Pau Gasol and Xavier Henry could both miss the remainder of the season as they continue to battle the injury bug that has plagued not only them, but the entire team this year.
With seven games remaining, it is very realistic that both players could be done for the season and may have even played their last game in the purple and gold, most notably Gasol:
The team is leaning toward sitting him for its final seven games while he recovers from a severe recurrence of vertigo. He won’t play Friday against Dallas after dizziness kept him confined at the team hotel Wednesday while the Lakers played Sacramento. He flew back on the team charter that night after missing a fifth game because of the illness.
Gasol has experienced a rough couple of seasons under coach Mike D’Antoni, who has failed to properly utilize the skill set of Gasol, while also trading barbs at one another through the media. The 33-year old Gasol is set to become a free agent this summer and may look to finish his career elsewhere if D’Antoni remains the Lakers head coach.
Gasol is averaging 17.4 points and 9.7 rebounds in 31.4 minutes a game this season.
Meanwhile, Henry continues to fight through multiple injuries and from the sound of things, his season is over:
Xavier Henry is not expected to return this season after being slowed by wrist and knee injuries. He averaged 10 points in 43 games.
Earlier this season, Henry suffered a right knee injury which caused the guard to miss two months of action. He returned in early March, but tore ligaments in his left wrist shortly after, adding to his woes. In four seasons, Henry has yet to play in more than 50 games due to injuries.
Kobe Bryant was examined by Lakers’ doctors Wednesday and has ruled out for the rest of the 2013-14 NBA season.
Lakers’ head athletic trainer, Gary Vitti, gave an update on his recovery process:
“Kobe will have the entire offseason to heal, rehab and prepare; we look forward to him being 100% for the start of next season.”
Bryant also made a short statement to the media Wednesday.
“Obviously this has been a frustrating and disappointing season, but I appreciate all the support I’ve received from the Lakers and the fans, and look forward to being back and ready for the start of training camp.”
Bryant fractured his lateral tibial plateau in his left knee just 6 games after returning from an Achilles injury that left him out of commission for 8 months. He was originally projected to only miss an additional 6 weeks, but after little progress his return was delayed. In a recent interview with Kustoo.com’s Jacques Slade, Bryant expressed frustration with his rehab:
“It’s progressing slowly. It really tests my patience”
This devastating news comes at no surprise to most Laker fans who have long suggested Bryant sit out this lost season anyway. With 18 games left in the season, the Lakers are in a three-way tie for the last spot in the Western Conference at 22-42.
This past week, Kobe Bryant sat down with Kustoo.com to discuss his latest release of his new kicks. During the interview, Bryant updated everyone on the progress he’s made on his left knee injury.
“It’s progressing slowly. It really tests my patience,” said Bryant. “There’s only so much you can do, so I find myself relegated to riding the bike.”
Bryant has only played in six games this season due to his recovery from his Achilles’ tear last April and then after injuring his lateral tibial plateau on Dec. 17 against the Memphis Grizzlies.
“After the first few weeks [riding the bike], it’s cool — you’re getting a good workout,” said Bryant. “Then third, fourth — I need to do something else. I want to play. I want to run. I want to do something different, but you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do.”
At this point it is unclear whether Bryant will even return this season as the Lakers currently sit at the bottom of the Western Conference standings.
After exiting early for the second straight game with nerve irritation, it looks like Steve Nash may be out until after the All-Star break.
After Tuesday’s game vs the Jazz, Nash spoke very briefly to reporters, but did mention he might need some more time to get past this issue:
“I think I need a little more time to get over the hump,” he told the LA Times.
Head coach Mike D’Antoni was noncommittal in his post-game comments regarding his point guard, but at the time seemed like he did not know his status moving forward.
“I imagine it’s day to day. I don’t know anything else,” D’Antoni said of Nash’s status. “I haven’t really talked to him.”
It is definitely a concern that Nash says he needs a little more time to get over this injury considering he took nearly three months to return the court. At 40 years old, it is really hard to imagine this nerve root problem improving enough to where he could play multiple games in a row without setbacks.
Guard Steve Blake also shared his concern to reporters regarding Nash after the game:
“I’m pretty concerned. I know he’s dealing with a lot of pain.”
With Tuesday being Nash’s tenth game of the season, the Lakers cannot apply for the salary exclusion until one year after his final game, whenever that may be. There was talk of a potential medical retirement that would take Nash’s salary off the books, but that is no longer an option because of the number of games he has played in.
Had he retired before ten games, the Lakers could have applied for the salary exclusion 60 days after his final game, clearing his contract for the summer.
In simpler terms, Nash’s salary is on the books this season and next season barring some sort of trade, which is highly unlikely.
The Lakers using the stretch provision on Nash this summer seems more and more likely by the day.
The Lakers have announced that guard Nick Young will be out a minimum of two weeks after being diagnosed with a non-displaced fracture of the left patella and a bone bruise.
Young injured his knee in Wednesday’s game against the Cavaliers. An MRI Thursday showed the significance of the knee injury.
At this point, there are very little words to describe how much bad luck this Lakers team has had this season. Losing Swaggy P is a big blow to this team that continues to battle every night despite a depleted roster. This season, Young is averaging 16.9 points in 28.8 minutes a game.
Fortunately, the Lakers have gotten back Steve Nash, Steve Blake, and Jordan Farmar, but it is terrible to lose yet another player. Earlier in the week, Jodie Meeks sprained his ankle and will be out until at least Sunday. Kobe Bryant is still out for another two weeks before he is re-evaluated.
While the Lakers have announced Young is out at least two weeks, it should be noted that non-displaced fractures of the patella could take as long as six-to-eight weeks to heal. Let’s hope it doesn’t take that long for Swaggy P to return to the court.
Update (Feb 1, 2:30pm) –Pau Gasol, who had been dealing with a sore right groin, had an MRI today which revealed a strained right groin.
Gasol will be out a minimum of a week and will be re-evaluated next weekend when the team returns from its three-game road trip.
Additionally, Lakers backup center Chris Kaman, who has a sore right knee, also had an MRI. Results of the MRI were negative and he is cleared to play.
– End of Update –
Over the past few weeks, Pau Gasol has played at an elite level–looking like the Gasol of old, all while battling a groin injury.
Unfortunately, the pain and discomfort has gotten to the point where Gasol will have an MRI Saturday to see what the extent of the injury is. ESPNLA’s Ramona Shelburne spoke with Gasol after Friday’s loss against the Charlotte Bobcats.
Pau Gasol said he'll have an MRI on his injured groin tomorrow. "Something's not right in there"
Gasol had himself a great month of basketball in January averaging 20.6 points and 12.1 rebounds per game.
For the Lakers, just when it looked like relief was coming on the injury front, this happens. All we can do is hope for the best regarding Gasol’s MRI results.
For as much criticism he has received and all the trade talk he’s been involved in the last few years, Gasol has been the Lakers’ best player this season and has continued to leave it all on the floor, despite the team’s struggles.
Kobe Bryant will miss at least three more weeks as he recovers from his left knee injury, the Lakers announced Tuesday. Bryant was evaluated by team physician Dr. Steve Lombardo and still has pain and swelling in his left knee.
Bryant will continue with a program of non-weight bearing exercise, consisting mostly of working out on a stationary bike. He will be examined again in approximately three weeks..
It is a tough blow for the Lakers, as they were hopeful that Bryant would return before the All-Star break. Bryant will certainly miss the All-Star game and could miss the rest of February.
It is important to remember that it is at least three weeks until he is re-evaluated. If cleared after three weeks, he would still need another two or three weeks of conditioning before he steps back onto the court.
Discouraging news out of Lakers camp as Kobe Bryant is expected to miss at least two more weeks with a fractured lateral tibial plateau in his left knee, according to Bleacher Report’s Kevin Ding.
Bryant had been doing stationary bicycle work since fracturing his knee on December 17th and had hoped to ramp up his rehabilitation this week.
According to Ding, however, Bryant’s knee fracture has yet to heal.
The fractured lateral tibial plateau in Bryant’s left knee hasn’t healed yet, even though the Lakers had initially been pointing to a medical re-evaluation Tuesday as a point at which he might be cleared to play.
Bryant’s level of discomfort is such that his visit with Lakers doctor Steve Lombardo on Tuesday evening before the Lakers face the Indiana Pacers will not even include any MRI or other diagnostic procedure to judge the bone’s healing, according to a team source.
While Bryant is expected to miss another two weeks, he could possibly miss up to another month.
Bryant’s original diagnosis, on December 19th, was to miss approximately six weeks; this Thursday marks six weeks from the start of that timeline.
The Lakers, now 16-29 on the season, are too far out of the playoff race for Bryant’s return to matter much this season.
His return, however, will be necessary in proving to potential free agents that the ‘Black Mamba’ is still able to play at a high level. With an uncertain off-season on the horizon, a healthy Bryant is imperative to lure marquee free agents such as Carmelo Anthony, LeBron James, etc to Los Angeles.
Bryant has refused to capitulate to the notion of sitting out the rest of this season, so stay tuned for a better understanding of Bryant’s health here in the next two weeks.
Still battling the upper respiratory infection that kept him out versus the Golden State Warriors last week, Pau Gasol will not travel with the team today as the Lakers prepare for their Friday night matchup versus the Utah Jazz.
It is unknown whether Gasol will play as he is listed as day-to-day, but at the very least will not be with the team when they land in Utah later this evening.
Pau Gasol not going on trip to Utah because of upper-respiratory infection.
It’s disappointing news for the Lakers as they look to snap a three game losing streak. Battling an array of injuries and inconsistent play, the purple and gold are 4-8 in December. We’ll have more news on Gasol’s status for tomorrow as we receive it.
After playing just 6 games after returning from a torn Achilles, Kobe Bryant is out of the lineup once again with a fracture of the lateral tibial plateau in his left knee. Kobe is expected to miss six weeks.
Injury Update: Kobe Bryant has a fracture of the lateral tibial plateau in his left knee. He is expected to miss 6 weeks.
According to the LA Times’ Eric Pincus, Nash is starting to show signs of discouragement, despite working as hard as possible to physically become healthy enough to play.
“Hopefully that’s a really good timeline where I can get healthy and put my back in a position where it can protect itself and survive,” Nash said regarding his probable return period. “This has really been something I’ve faced since the end of March. The toughest thing has been emotionally and mentally. I’ve had a lot of down days.”
Along with Nash and Bryant, the two other Lakers’ point guards PG Steve Blake and PG Jordan Farmar are still out for the foreseeable future due to their respective injuries. The Lakers did sign PG Kendall Marshalltoday to a non-guaranteed contract to back up G Xavier Henry at the point gaurd position.
Nash has been limited to only 6 games this season, averaging 6.7 PPG and 2.8 APG in 22.5 MPG. For Nash and the Lakers, it has been very unfortunate since Nash suffered the freak leg fracture in their 2nd regular season game last season.
Hopefully Nash will make a full recovery and return to his old form, or some resemblance of it. His excellent work ethic and pride still gets him through the rehabilitation process.
However, due to the nerve issue and his age, it seems less and less likely that he can return to his old form as each day passes this season.
Lakers fans will be happy with today’s news coming out of practice regarding Kobe Bryant. #24 practiced with the team and went full speed today in their scrimmage. Interesting to note that Kobe was seen as being more of a facilitator rather than looking for his own shot. He was able to cut, go around screens, and did not look limited.
What was the most exciting part of the scrimmage? The ending. That’s when Kobe finished the game with a dunk, showing that he is comfortable exploding off the Achilles.
And @kobebryant just dunked. Picked Henry’s pocket, sprinted up the left side and threw down with his left. Moving pretty well today…
In another significant injury update, Steve Nash returned to the floor today and practiced before the media was allowed in. He did not participate in the 5-on-5 scrimmage because of a sore back. From the sound of things, it was baby steps for Nash and it could be days and possibly weeks until we see him back in game action. There’s plenty of concern from Nash and it’s important the Lakers do not rush him back to the court.
Steve Nash: “Every day I’m out is a day lost … I don’t know about a quick comeback, but I’m making a lot progress.”
The Lakers will travel to Sacramento on Friday to take on the Kings. Kobe’s return could not come soon enough after Jordan Farmar’s hamstring injury depleting the point guard depth. Steve Blake practiced, despite a hyper-extended elbow, and is the lone point guard at the moment. The expectation is that Kobe will play more of a facilitator role upon his return.
Xavier Henry also played some point guard in the scrimmage so there is a chance that if Kobe does not make his return Friday, that Henry could see some time at the back-up point guard position.
Here is the InstaVid from the Lakers of Kobe’s left-handed dunk today:
Also, Gasol had this to say on Twitter after practice.
Looking at the Lakers this season in comparison to last year something that stands out is injuries. The Lakers had a number of players out for a great deal of the year during the 2012-2013 season and because of it they were never really were able to become comfortable with one another on the floor. Injuries were just one of the many problems from last year, but to keep a long story short we will keep last year where it is; in the past.
This year, while injuries have played another key role (ie. Kobe Bryant), they have played a more significant role than previously believed with former all-star and 2-time MVP point guard Steve Nash. During the summer, Nash told media that he felt great recovering from last season and preparing for this one as he tried out for Inter Milan.
As of right now via sports journalist Peter Vecsey, Nash is considering retirement due to the severity of the injury and the nerve problems he is experiencing:
I'm hearing Nash's pain is forcing him 2 seriously consider calling it a career. He'd still get $ this yr & next & LA'd get cap relief next
If Steve were to medically retire he would receive his contractual payment for this year and next year and he would come off the books for the Lakers next season. While monetarily this would be a good move to increase the amount the Lakers could spend during the off-season it is a major cause for concern considering Nash is a key piece of the Lakers big three.
Again, last season Nash did deal with a serious injury suffering a non-displaced fracture in his left leg that originally was going to sideline him for a week. Nash ultimately did not return to the floor for almost seven. Even after returning Nash flashed glimpses of the Steve Nash we all have come to know but never really was able to recapture his old form.
With this news from Peter Vecsey,whatever current plans the Lakers had may be thrown out of the window. At this point, they will ultimately need to decide on what to do in the case Nash does medically retire and leave a shorthanded roster in even worse shape than it currently is.
What do you believe the Lakers should do with this new knowledge? Should they trade Nash, allow him to retire, sign another you point guard? Do you believe this injury will force him into retirement? Sound off below and I will be sure to reply!
Via Mark Medina of the LA Daily News, the Lakers have become adamant in their saying that Steve Nash is not considering retirement. Coach Mike D’Antoni took the stand for Nash saying that he is here for the long haul.
“He’s looking at, ‘What am I going to do when I’m 50?’ But no, he’s going to try and do everything he can to come back,” Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni said. “Whether he can get over this, we’ll see. We think he can. We hope he can. But there’s no talk of him sitting over there eating bon bons the rest of the way.”
A close source to Steve used the word “premature” in relation to discussion of Nash retiring because of the injury. While the tweet from Vecsey caused a stir among those within the basketball community D’Antoni again reassured everyone saying he has spent time recently with Steve.
“Steve and I have been extremely close through this process,” Bryant said. “We’re just talking, and particularly the last few games, we’ve been talking and watching the game and talking about the game and other things. I understand the frustration that comes along with that.”
While it has been cleared up that Steve is not considering retirement it still does open an interesting discussion in what the Lakers should do with their aging lead guard. Nash, who will be 40 in February, is far beyond the average age of the point guard in the NBA today. While no final decisions need to be made yet, a discussion sure does need to begin.
With the Lakers off to a poor start, trade rumors have begun to swirl around Kobe Bryant, leading many to speculate if he'll leave for greener pastures. Kobe puts those rumors to rest in his interview with Yahoo Sports.