Sports Out West

Lakers news: Pau Gasol will not play in Friday’s game

Photo Credit: USATSI

The Los Angeles Lakers will be without forward/center Pau Gasol in Friday’s road game against the Utah Jazz due to respiratory issues, according to Dave McMenamin of ESPNLosAngeles.com.

Gasol, who is officially listed as day-to-day, had missed last Saturday’s game against the Golden State Warriors because of the illness and had played the last two games against the Phoenix Suns on Tuesday and the Miami Heat on Christmas day. The 33-year-old had not shown signs that his health had been bothering him as he averaged 11.5 points, 8.5 rebounds and 3.0 assists in both games this week.

The news had not come as much of a surprise after Thursday’s practice as it was revealed that he did not participate as he had visited ear, nose and throat specialist Dr. John J. Rehm.

“Like anything else, you’re not 100 percent physically and you’re going to have shorter times of energy and stuff like that,” Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni said when asked about Gasol. “He’ll get over it. He’ll be fine.”

The three-time All-Star has struggled with his health this season that include several bouts with respiratory problems, a strain muscle in his left foot and a mild right ankle sprain. This in turn may have effected his play on the court this season as he is averaging a career-low in field goal percentage at .446, and his second lowest points per game average at 14.7.

With Gasol out for Friday’s game expect either Jordan Hill or Chris Kaman to start in his place against the Jazz. 

Photo Credit: USATSI

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Bob Garcia IV

Bob Garcia is a sports journalist from Southern California. He was a reporter for the award-winning newspaper, The Daily Sundial, at California State University, Northridge. You can follow him on Twitter, @BGarcia90.