Kurt —  October 19, 2006

Kwame’s shoulder injury is worse than previously thought — it is being reported that he will be sidelined three to four weeks.

Normally that would not be a big deal, but Chris Mihm is not yet right from ankle surgery. He said in today’s LA Times he wants to be ready by the start of the season, but then I want a Maserati. Jon Black (Laker spokesman) says in the above-linked article he will not be ready.

Combine that with Kobe likely to be there opening day but not being ready for 45 minutes and 60+ points, Radmanovic’s hand, Cook out, Shammond Williams pelvis and every part of Aaron McKie south of the neck injured in some ways and the Lakers are one banged up team that will be taped together but slowed to start the season.

Which has to be concerning — remember 15 of the first 20 Laker games are at Staples, while the middle of the season sees some long road trips and tough stretches. The Lakers are not a team — in a deeper-than-last-year West — that will find it easy to dig out of a hole (and I would call 12-8 after 20 games a hole).

Being without Kwame and Mihm to start the season means last seasons draft picks — Andrew Bynum and Ronny Turiaf — will play a key role in whether the Lakers get off to the start they need to make the playoffs. On that note, I may head over to the Catholic church up the street and light a candle.