It was November 17th when Laker fans received the news that back-up center, Theo Ratliff, would have to miss 4 to 6 weeks after undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his left knee.
17 weeks later, Ratliff has yet to return to the hardwood, however there may be some encouraging news for Lakers fans:
“Ratliff practiced today for the second time this week and if all goes well during scheduled practices this week, he could be sound enough to play” – Elliot Teaford (Inside the Lakers)
A return would add some much needed depth and veteran leadership as the Lakers head into the postseason.
With Derrick Caracter being a rookie and Joe Smith not getting much playing time, the Lakers currently have little to offer in terms of big men who can give them quality minutes off of the bench. Even in limited minutes, Ratliff can make a definite impact for the Lakers, especially on the defensive end of the floor.
Ratliff has only appeared in 8 games so far this season for the Lakers.