Pau Gasol, who has missed the last eight games due to tendinitis in both knees, returned to practice today at the Lakers training facility in El Segundo. Depending on how his knees respond to practice, Gasol may play in tomorrow night's matchup with the Charlotte Bobacts. With Gasol on the bench, Lakers' caoch Mike D'Antoin has been forced to use multiple starting lineups including starting Antawn Jamison at power forward, or going small and starting Devin Ebanks and Metta World Peace together. Los Angeles has gone 3-5 without Gasol but have played their best basketball of the season in their last two wins over Washington and Philadelphia.
Despite being away from action, Gasol has been on the bench alongside the injured Steve Nash taking in and learning the D'Antoni offense. However, even though he has seen the offense run from the sideline, playing a part of it is a different story. D'Antoni should consider bringing Gasol off of the bench instead of putting him in the starting linuep to give the second unit some much-needed leadership. Before Gasol went down with the injury to his knees, he was scrutinized for his poor performance in the new offense so he now how has a fresh start in the offense. Gasol is averaging 12.6 point and 8.8 rebounds in 17 games this season.
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