Sneak Preview: Orlando Magic at Los Angeles Lakers | Magic Basketball



Mar 14

Sneak Preview: Orlando Magic at Los Angeles Lakers

Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

  • Brian Schmitz of the Orlando Sentinel: “Hey, who else to give out medical advice but Grant Hill? Hill, who told the Sentinel he plans on playing until he is 40, warned Magic SG J.J. Redick to be wary of his lower abdominal injury. Hill sustained a sports hernia or athletic sports pubalgia, when he played in Orlando. He tore abdominal muscles off his pubic bone. Battling a strained lower abdomen, Redick missed his second consecutive game Sunday, sitting out against Hill’s Phoenix Suns. Redick said he was feeling better. […] Redick will not play tonight against the Lakers in Los Angeles. He said he had not undergone an MRI, and was non-committal when asked if he would get one. Hills’ teammate, star PG Steve Nash, missed the game, also experiencing similar lower abdomen pain. Coach Stan Van Gundy said he hoped that Redick might be back to face the Bucks in Milwaukee on Wednesday night, the conclusion of the trip. Redick initially injured himself last Friday during the team’s shootaround in San Francisco.”
  • Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times: “Kobe Bryant didn’t practice Sunday and he didn’t talk to the media, declining even to give an update on his injured left ankle or his playing status for Monday night’s game. So it was left up to Lakers Coach Phil Jackson to clarify matters, saying only that Bryant would be a game-time decision for the contest against the Orlando Magic at Staples Center. ‘We hope he’ll be able to play,’ Jackson said. After a light practice Sunday, Jackson said he hadn’t seen or talked to Bryant about his injury, but he expected his guard to get treatment. Minutes after Jackson left his media session, Bryant was heard talking with Lakers trainer Gary Vitti. If Bryant doesn’t play Monday night, he would have five days to rest his ankle, because the Lakers don’t play again until Friday night, when they play host to the Minnesota Timberwolves.”
  • T.J. Simers of the Los Angeles Times: “Dinner with Phil Jackson here, a huge mistake for the big guy because I know now he’s capable of giving more than one-word answers. It’s Friday night at a highly recommended Mexican restaurant, 16 regular-season games remaining in the career of the greatest all-time NBA coach, and we’re talking Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant. It begins with a question that has nothing to do with either superstar: Is there a chance he might regret retiring while the Lakers remain capable of winning again? ‘I hope I have no regrets about coming back this year. When I saw how Kobe was struggling physically last year, Fish [Derek Fisher] was getting older,” and then he stops himself and brings the conversation back to Bryant. ‘Kobe was really hurt; people don’t give him enough credit. He’s a remarkable person, remarkable.’ ‘Do you like him?’ I ask. ‘It’s not about liking him,’ he says. ‘It’s about admiring his courage. There’s only one individual I know that’s like that, and that’s Michael Jordan. Kobe has patterned himself after Michael, and there are a lot of identical things there, but it’s one thing to hope to be like him, it’s another thing to be like him.’ ”
  • Brian Kamenetzky of ESPN Los Angeles: “The Los Angeles Lakers received a scare Saturday night in Dallas, when Kobe Bryant landed awkwardly on his left ankle with 1:52 remaining in the third quarter, re-aggravating an injury suffered two games prior in Atlanta and sending him limping to the locker room for evaluation. He returned in the fourth quarter, but the injury, which he called a sprain, put his availability for Monday’s game against the Orlando Magic at Staples Center in question. Sunday’s practice provided no answers, as Bryant didn’t speak with reporters after arriving at the team’s training facility for treatment. He will be re-evaluated Monday. In the meantime, his status remains the same. […] Bryant, averaging a team-high 25 points along with 4.8 assists and 5.2 rebounds, has played in all 67 of his team’s games this year. The Lakers have three days off following their date with the Magic before facing Minnesota at home Friday night. Jackson indicated the break wouldn’t influence any decision about Bryant’s availability Monday night.”