The image circulated on Sunday morning, Lakers strength and conditioning coach Tim DiFrancesco showing in a tweet that forward Nick Young began weight- lifting exercises since nursing a swollen left knee that has kept him sidelined for the past 11 games in the past month.
Young will stay sidelined at least through this week, including when the Lakers (17-50) host the Philadelphia 76ers (17-52) on Sunday at Staples Center. Lakers coach Byron Scott also plans to touch base with trainer Gary Vitti sometime tonight on the next step for Young, who has not performed any basketball-related exercises. Scott said he noticed Young working out with DiFrancesco both on Saturday and Sunday.
“From Gary’s standpoint, it’s getting better,” Scott said. “But it’s one of those things where he still has pain. But it’s not as bad. The swelling has gone down to the point where you can barely see it. But there’s something in there going on.”
Last week, Scott sounded skeptical Young would travel for the Lakers’ eight-game, five-game trip with stops in Oklahoma City (Tuesday), Minnesota (Wednesday), Toronto (Friday), Brooklyn (Sunday) and Philadelphia (Monday). But Scott suggested it seems more possible Young could travel with the team, something that might yield more clarity when Scott speaks with Vitti.
“My thing is more of when he’s on the road with us, can he get the same type of treatment?” Scott said. “Or is it better to leave him here where we have [the Lakers’ practice facility] and Kerlan Jobe [Orthopaedic Clinic] at our disposal and he can get physical therapy there, too. Whatever is best for him right now is the best way to go.”
Scott laughed at the suggestion that he would prefer Young to stay at home considering the Lakers’ eccentric forward has occasionally annoyed him this season. It has not helped that coincided with Young averaging 13.4 points on a career-low 36.6 percent shooting.
“Nah, I don’t mind seeing him on the road trip,” Scott said, chuckling. “I like making him travel just to get him away from being here in LA for a week with nothing else to do.”