NEW ORLEANS — With an MRI showing Metta World Peace has a sprained right ankle, the Lakers consider him a game-time decision when they play tonight against the New Orleans Hornets at New Orleans Arena.
World Peace said he accidentally stepped on Serge Ibaka’s foot in the waning minutes of the Lakers’ 122-105 loss Tuesday to the Oklahoma City Thunder. He walked with a limp in the locker room afterwards and an initial x-ray produced inconslusive results.
World Peace’s injury represents a larger picture surrounding the Lakers’ health concerns.
Kobe Bryant has an ulnar nerve contusion on his right elbow, essentially an injury to his funny bone. Dwight Howard aggravated the torn labrum in his right shoulder during the Lakers’ loss Tuesday vs. Oklahoma City. Pau Gasol has remained sidelined for the past month because of torn plantar facia in his right foot, an injury that will keep him out for at least an additional two to four weeks.
Should World Peace not play, it’s likely Antawn Jamison would start in his place.
World Peace has averaged 12.7 points and 5.3 rebounds, his highest statistical output in four seasons with the Lakers. But World Peace’s numbers substantially dropped in February, averaging 9.3 points per game on 38.5 percent shooting. Nonetheless, World Peace has posted two consecutive double-digit efforts and has provided consistent energy.
Jamison has posted double digits in eight of the last nine games. But the Lakers’ defense will notably drop off with World Peace’s absence.
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