Lakers at All-Star weekend

Kobe Bryant won’t be playing in the All-Star game because of a sprained left ankle, but Pau Gasol will represent the Lakers on Sunday. Jason Kidd of the Dallas Mavericks has replaced Bryant on the Western Conference roster, and word on the street is Dirk Nowitzki will take his place as a starter. Gasol is a reserve. Shannon Brown will compete in the dunk contest. Derek Fisher will attend union meetings starting today in his role as the players’ association president. A few other players might be headed to Dallas, too, including Jordan Farmar, Ron Artest and DJ Mbenga (as Brown’s assistant in the dunk contest). Lakers VP Jeanie Buss will represent the team in Dallas, but Coach Phil Jackson will stay home and do laundry and feed the dog, as he put it the other day. Pretty much everyone else plans to get some rest and relaxation over the next few days, yours truly included.

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