Small Ball: No Bynum, No Gasol for Friday Night

Kurt —  November 5, 2009

Los Angeles Lakers vs Houston Rockets NBA Game 7 Western Conference semifinals in Los Angeles
The good news first: Andrew Bynum has a mild strain in his elbow, nothing serious. Also, Pau Gasol participated in practice — not contact drills — on Thursday, the first full practice he has taken part in for weeks.

The bad news: Neither is likely to play against Memphis.

Well, maybe that’s not bad news for Bynum, considering his track record with Memphis. And as I’ve hinted at before, there were some in the organization that seem to think Gasol could have come back faster (read PJ’s quotes and see where you think he falls on that spectrum).

But to quote Kelly Dwyer, what matters is not Memphis but May. Better to be healthy and error on the side of caution now.

All of this should make the Memphis game entertaining — the Grizzlies are a good offensive team, but so far this young season have been the worst defensive team in the league. And they have AI complaining about coming off the bench, just to add to the distractions.

I think the Lakers go small — Fisher/Brown/Kobe/Artest/Odom and get out and run with the Grizzlies. DJ Mbenga and Josh Powell will need to have good games, but with two teams that can really score this should be an entertaining night at Staples.