With Pau Gasol’s groin injury sidelining the four-time All-Star for at least a week, the Lakers have a void to fill in the starting lineup’s front court. One of those options could be Chris Kaman, but the center has admitted recently that his time with the Lakers has not been what he expected when he signed in the off-season.
The veteran has played sparingly, only starting five games this season and seeing action in 23 games. He is averaging 8.1 ppg, the first time he has not averaged double digit points since his 2004-05 season with the Clippers.
“Well I’m disappointed how it’s comes out, it’s frustrating to have Pau go down like that…because he’s a heck of a player and we need him to be successful,” said Kaman of his playing time. “But it’s part of the game and you have to wait your turn. I’m just trying to be patient and take advantage of the opportunities I’m given.”
But then again, nothing has as gone right for the Lakers as a team, currently in fourth place in the Pacific Division and riding a six-game losing streak.
“We’ve put ourselves in a poor position so far this year. We’ve had injuries all over the place, guys we didn’t anticipate getting hurt…so just part of the bad streak we have going on,” said Kaman. We just need to focus on getting each game, play as hard as we can and win that game.”
That next game comes against Minnesota on Tuesday, where the Lakers will have to find away to stop All-Star Kevin Love. The defense also hopes to snap a 14-game streak of giving up at least 100 points to opponents, and Kaman believes he can help.
“I just think we give up a lot of layups. Sometimes you need to use your fouls wisely and take hard fouls when you can. And just try to contest shots, sometime they just turn and we give them open layups,” said Kaman. “And I’m not perfect, I’m not the best defender, but I understand positioning and where to be and stuff, so that’s something I think I can help with a little bit.”