Lakers’ Jeremy Lin, Ryan Kelly return to starting lineup

It’s no secret that Jeremy Lin has been playing mostly well since being demoted to the bench in December. After a season-high 29 points on Sunday against Philadelphia, Lin will be rewarded with a return to the starting lineup on Tuesday at Oklahoma City.

Byron Scott announced the decision following practice on Monday by saying that Lin would be paired with Jordan Clarkson and it was something he had considered the previous weeks based on Lin’s performances leading up to Sunday

“It had nothing to do with last night but last night obviously made it a little bit easier to throw him in there because he played so well. We’ll see what happens on this trip,” Scott said.

Continue reading “Lakers’ Jeremy Lin, Ryan Kelly return to starting lineup” »

Los Angeles Lakers at the trade deadline: Live chat with reporter Mark Medina

As the Los Angeles Lakers near the end of their All-Star break, and a day ahead of the NBA trade deadline, there are some key decisions to make in the days ahead. Chat live with Lakers beat writer Mark Medina from 9 a.m. (Pacific) to 10 a.m., Wednesday, Feb. 18.

Byron Scott talks about what Jeremy Lin must do to thrive in reserve role

Jeremy Lin

Jeremy Lin/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Lakers, NBA.com

 

Power forward Carlos Boozer and point guard Jeremy Lin were removed from the starting lineup two games ago. Boozer has responded well with 12 points on 6 of 12 shooting in a loss to New Orleans on Sunday and 15 points on 6 of 13 shooting Tuesday in a win over Sacramento.

Lin has suffered. He had just three points on 1 of 5 shooting against New Orleans and three points on 1 of 5 shooting against Sacramento. He did have four assists in each game.

“He has to be aggressive, but you’ve gotta be smart,” coach Byron Scott said, when asked what Lin needs to do to thrive. “As a point guard, he has to understand the situations, he has to understand the guys he’s playing with, who needs a shot, when they need a shot, who’s hot and things like that. But still have an aggressive mind-set. I think right now that’s the one or two things that he’s struggling with.

“It doesn’t matter if it’s as a starter or as a reserve, those are the things he has to implement into his game.”

TWC SportsNet discusses Jeremy Lin’s progress with Lakers

Los Angeles Lakers' Jeremy Lin, left, puts up a shot against Phoenix Suns' Earl Barron during the first half of a preseason NBA basketball game on Tuesday, Oct. 21, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif. (File photo/AP Photo)

Los Angeles Lakers’ Jeremy Lin, left, puts up a shot against Phoenix Suns’ Earl Barron during the first half of a preseason NBA basketball game on Tuesday, Oct. 21, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif. (File photo/AP Photo)

For a player that has become weary of the hype surrounding him, Jeremy Lin has still lived up to it. No, “Linsanity” hasn’t returned to the Lakers. At least not yet. But he has made enough of a difference that Lin will start in the Lakers’ season opener tonight against the Houston Rockets at Staples Center.

Granted, Lin dutifully noted that he is starting partly because of a season-ending injury to Steve Nash (back) and a less severe injury to Ronnie Price (right knee). Lakers coach Byron Scott had also favored Price for most of exhibition play for reasons including Lin’s recent left ankle injury, Price’s experience and Lin’s secondary scoring helping a depleted Lakers bench. But Scott made it clear the starting point guard position is fluid.

Yet, it appears Lin has the tools eventually to keep the spot permanently. He has closed out fourth quarters. Lin and Kobe Bryant thus far have shown a good balance between both ball handling duties and scoring. Lin’s aggressive mentality in attacking the basket has both created easy baskets and opened the floor for others. All of this sparked Magic Johnson to endorse Lin on Twitter.

This all became a topic of discussion recently on Time Warner Cable’s Access SportsNet where host Chris McGee, analyst Dave Miller and I talked about Lin’s presence with the Lakers thus far.

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Follow L.A. Daily News Lakers beat writer Mark Medina on Twitter and on Facebook. E-mail him at mark.medina@langnews.com

Lakers’ Ryan Kelly out vs. Jazz with right hamstring injury

It has already become this kind of season for the Lakers. As soon as they believe they make progress on having healthy players, another injury happens.

Lakers forward Ryan Kelly will miss tonight’s game against the Utah Jazz at Staples Center after injuring his right hamstring. Kelly had already been sidelined since training camp started with a strained left hamstring.

Scott said he hasn’t talked with Lakers trainer Gary Vitti about Kelly’s timetable, but it seems likely he will not play in any preseason games. The Lakers have three other exhibitions on Tuesday (vs. Phoenix at Staples Center), on Wednesday (vs. Portland in Ontario) and on Friday (vs. Sacramento in Las Vegas).

“He looked good until he hurt his other hamstring,” Scott said. “It’s not as bad as the first one.”

Meanwhile, Scott said Lakers guard Jeremy Lin remains a game-time decision after missing the past two exhibitions with a sprained left ankle. Lin was participating in shooting drills at the conclusion of morning shootaround, but the Lakers want to see how his ankle responds leading leading into the 6:30 p.m. tip time.

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Follow L.A. Daily News Lakers beat writer Mark Medina on Twitter and on Facebook. E-mail him at mark.medina@langnews.com

Lakers’ Jeremy Lin tweaks right ankle, still hopes to play Sunday vs. Utah

New Laker Jeremy Lin talks about the upcoming season before signing autographs for fans at a shoe store in Culver City. SCOTT VARLEY — STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

New Laker Jeremy Lin talks about the upcoming season before signing autographs for fans at a shoe store in Culver City. SCOTT VARLEY — STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

The Lakers cannot seem to stay healthy even when they are not playing games.

Lakers guard Jeremy Lin tweaked his right ankle in individual drills during Thursday’s morning shootaround, adding doubt to whether he can return Sunday against the Utah Jazz at Staples Center. Lin has also stayed out of the Lakers’ last two preseason games because of a previously sprained left ankle.

Lin stayed attached to an electronic stimulation machine following Friday’s practice before completing some light shooting drills.

“Me and this stim manchine are best friends,” Lin said. “Every day, all the time. We’ve been doing a lot of therapy multiple times a day.”
Continue reading “Lakers’ Jeremy Lin tweaks right ankle, still hopes to play Sunday vs. Utah” »

Jeremy Lin suffers sprained ankle in practice

It seems like the Lakers’ injury woes continued to get worse as Jeremy Lin suffered a sprained left ankle during practice and will be re-evaluated for tomorrow’s game against Golden State.

Lakers coach Byron Scott said Lin suffered the injury during 5-on-5 workouts after being stepped on by Robert Sacre. He was able to walk off the court on his own power but was in pain.

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Jeremy Lin’s photogallery of autograph signing

"New Los Angeles Lakers player Jeremy Lin signs autographs for fans at a shoe store in Culver City, CA on Thursday, September 25, 2014. (Photo by Scott Varley, Daily Breeze) "

“New Los Angeles Lakers player Jeremy Lin signs autographs for fans at a shoe store in Culver City, CA on Thursday, September 25, 2014. (Photo by Scott Varley, Daily Breeze) “

You read about Lakers guard Jeremy Lin wanting to become a complete player. You read about Lin providing positive reports on Kobe Bryant and Steve Nash after playing a handful of pickup games with them this offseason. You read about Lin using his time off from an extensive training and travel schedule to make goofy videos.

But pictures always tell a 1,000 words. And in the case of LANG’s photo gallery of Lin’s appearance at the Foot Locker at Westfield Mall in Culver City on Thursday, plenty of images tell various stories.

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Jeremy Lin gushes about health of Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash

Lakers depth chart breakdown: Jeremy Lin

Follow L.A. Daily News Lakers beat writer Mark Medina on Twitter and on Facebook. E-mail him at mark.medina@langnews.com

Jeremy Lin gushes about health of Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash

"New Los Angeles Lakers player Jeremy Lin talks about the upcoming season before signing autographs for fans at a shoe store in Culver City, CA on Thursday, September 25, 2014. (Photo by Scott Varley, Daily Breeze) "

“New Los Angeles Lakers player Jeremy Lin talks about the upcoming season before signing autographs for fans at a shoe store in Culver City, CA on Thursday, September 25, 2014. (Photo by Scott Varley, Daily Breeze) “

The extensive resumes that leave little doubt both Kobe Bryant and Steve Nash will eventually find their name plastered inside the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Yet, both Bryant and Nash enter the 2014-15 season with plenty to prove toward a skeptical general public.

The unanswered and pressing question: can Bryant and Nash both play effectively and stay healthy after staying ravaged last season by injuries? No one, including Bryant and Nash, know for sure. But they have provided enough signs this offseason to leave the Lakers cautiously optimistic about their durability.

“They both look really good and really healthy,” Lakers guard Jeremy Lin said Thursday at the Foot Locker in Westfield Mall at Culver City, both to promote his Adidas shoes and sign autographs for fans. That’s the biggest thing for us. Health is going to be a huge factor for us this upcoming season. They were moving well and looked much better than they did last year.”
Continue reading “Jeremy Lin gushes about health of Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash” »

Lakers depth chart breakdown: Jeremy Lin

Lakers introduce newest player Jeremy Lin to the gathered media at the Toyota Sports Center training facility in El Segundo.   Photo by Brad Graverson/The Daily Breeze/ 07/24/14"

Lakers introduce newest player Jeremy Lin to the gathered media at the Toyota Sports Center training facility in El Segundo. Photo by Brad Graverson/The Daily Breeze/ 07/24/14″

Below is the eighth in a series previewing the story lines surrounding each player on the Lakers’ roster for the 2014-15 season. This post focuses on Lakers guard Jeremy Lin.

1. Will Lin start at point guard?
It would seem unthinkable two years ago to debate whether Steve Nash remains worthy of keeping his starting point guard spot. He has already etched a Hall of Fame resume that entails two regular-season MVP awards, a third-place standing on the NBA’s all time assists list and arguably the best point guard of this past generation. But after missing a combined 99 games the past two seasons through injuries to his left leg, back and hamstrings, Nash enters the 2014-15 season without much certainty on whether his improved health will prove enough to survive an 82-game season. Such issues could either prompt the Lakers to keep Nash as a starter just to ensure he stays fresh after warm ups or feature him as a reserve to minimize adjustments should he suffer another injury.

Meanwhile, Lin joins the Lakers eager to seek stability in an NBA career that took off with “Linsanity” in New York and plateaued the past two seasons with Houston amid evolving roles. Still, Lin offered plenty of positive signs in Houston. He posted career-highs last season in field-goal percentage from the field (44.6 percent), from three-point range (35.8 percent) and from the foul line (82.3 percent). Lin’s turnovers dropped to 2.5 per game after averaging 3.6 with the Knicks. According to ESPN, Lin shot 57.8 percent off drives last season, a mark that only trailed LeBron James (63.8 percent).

Will all those areas become enough for Lin to start at point guard? As of now, Lakers coach Byron Scott is favoring Nash. But that could easily change within the next month for reasons including Nash’s health and Lin’s talent level.
Continue reading “Lakers depth chart breakdown: Jeremy Lin” »