Los Angeles Lakers: Pau Gasol Expected to Start Upon Return


Dec 7, 2012; Oklahoma City, OK, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward Pau Gasol (16) watches against the Oklahoma City Thunder during the second half at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Despite the media’s rapid overreaction to Pau Gasol’s inability to fit into the Los Angeles Lakers’ offense thus far this season, while tending to a case of old age, head coach Mike D’Antoni isn’t buying that this team, as currently constructed, can’t compete.

According to ESPN Los Angeles, D’Antoni will not use Gasol in a Sixth Man role upon his return to the team:

"“I’m not going to mess with Pau,” D’Antoni said. “He’s too important to the team and he’s earned it and he’s too good of a player to even go there. That would be a last resort kind of desperate (move).”"

The Lakers lost their four of their last five games and haven’t had Gasol in the lineup for the previous four contests.

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