EL SEGUNDO — For unknown reasons, Pau Gasol revealed that tendinitis has emerged in both of his knees ever since training camp.
“It’s been bothering me for a while,” he said. “I play through it and try to keep it under control. It’s a little limiting. But it is what it is. I can’t do much about it.”
Gasol has worn bands over both knees during games to control the swelling and pain. But he didn’t reveal his injury until after the Lakers’ 117-89 victory Saturday over the Dallas Mavericks. Gasol expounded on the injury more after practice Monday at the team’s facility. Gasol decided against sitting out any games, but acknowledged how it’s affected his game.
“You lose a little bit of explosiveness and quickness and athleticism,” said Gasol, who has averaged 13.4 points on 43.4 percent shooting and 9.1 rebounds in 36 minutes per game. “It’s been under control more or less. Hopefully it won’t force me to miss any games unless i feel like my percentage of performance is way down. I can’t do that to myself or the team.”
Gasol’s time during the Lakers’ 1-3 trip in the past week featured plenty of ups and downs. After postin g only double-digit performances in losses to Sacramento and Memphis, Gasol revealed his hope to be featured more in the post. Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni also benched Gasol for the entire fourth quarter against Memphis, both for his sluggish play and because Antawn Jamison posted a season-high 14 points.
Gasol responded against Dallas by posting 13 points on a four of seven clip, nine rebounds and better energy.
“That tells me what I know about him. He’s a great guy, a competitor, has had a great career and will have one. I didn’t have any doubts. It was just a matter of simplifying what we know as coaches and getting the frustrations out and he did it. I would be shocked if he responded any other way. He’s that good of a guy.”
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