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Mo' Injuries, Mo' Problems

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sasha02
sasha02

Thank God that's over. Had the Lakers' regular season lasted even one more game, I'm not sure they'd have enough able bodies to fill a playoff roster. Another meaningless contest tonight, a 91 to 107 loss to the Clippers, resulted in another Laker casualty. With about three minutes left in the second quarter, Sasha Vujacic twisted his left ankle when he landed off a jump shot, crumpling to the floor. The initial diagnosis is a severe sprain, with an MRI to come tomorrow.

Sasha couldn't put any weight on his ankle and left the arena on crutches. I'm not a doctor of medicine (only of Making Sweet Love), but it doesn't sound good for the Machine. I'm guessing he's out the first couple rounds of the playoffs, at a minimum. Oh, and Phil Jackson mentioned after the game that Ron Artest tweaked an ankle, too, and that Luke Walton's back stiffened up. Other than those and seven other injuries, the Lakers are in sparkling health.

Losing Sasha is unfortunate. Obviously he hasn't had a great year on the whole, but he was starting to play well, and it's not like the Lakers are bursting with depth. Jordan Farmar's recovery is now even more imperative, and Phil's holding one fewer card to play in his effort to find some hot outside shooting. It's increasingly conceivable that Adam Morrison will see some playoff action.

Otherwise, tonight's game was a nonevent. Phil tempted fate by keeping Pau Gasol on the court for 28 minutes and Lamar Odom for 31. Luckily, fate moved on after whacking Sasha's ankle. Pau seems to be in top form heading into the Oklahoma City series. He scored 18 points tonight and collected 17 rebounds, and although his shooting (7 for 14) doesn't look that great, some of those misses were just him volleyballing his own shot at the rim. He's going to be a load for the Thunder to deal with. Ron, unfortunately, couldn't break out of his shooting slump. He shot 1 for 7 tonight and in six of the last seven games shot 40% or worse.

The schedule for the Thunder series has been announced. Here's when you'll need to avoid work, school, family life and social commitments:

Game One - Sunday 4/18 at noon (all times Pacific)

Game Two - Tuesday 4/20 (heh heh... "420") at 7:30

Game Three - Thursday 4/22 at 6:30

Game Four - Saturday 4/24 at 6:30

Game Five (if necessary) - Tuesday 4/27, time TBD

Game Six (if necessary) - Friday 4/30, time TBD

Game Seven (if necessary) - Monday 5/3, time TBD

So that's what lies ahead. The Lakers finish the regular season 57-25, identical to their record in 2007-08 and eight wins down from last year. It's been a good season, not a great one. Their chance to improve that verdict starts Sunday.

 

Poss.

TO%

FTA/
FGA

FT%

3FGA/FGA

2PT%

3PT%

EFG

TS%

OReb Rate

DReb Rate

PPP

LAL

96

15

0.33

68

0.13

40

36

42

46

30

80

0.95

LAC

96

13

0.23

74

0.2 8

55

39

56

59

20

70

1.11

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