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Pau Gasol could be back with Lakers by next Monday

Mar 15, 2013, 12:29 PM EDT

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Whether or not Kobe Bryant is going to be out for a while — he is officially a game-time decision in Indiana Friday and could play on his sprained ankle — the Lakers could use a little more offensive firepower.

Say, like Pau Gasol.

The Lakers skilled big man has been practicing with the team all week after recovering from a foot injury and it looks like he could be back with the team by Monday, coach Mike D’Antoni said. And that’s at the latest. Here are a couple tweets from Lakers reports Kevin Ding (Orange County Register) and Dave McMenamin (ESPNLosAngeles.com).

The question here becomes about fit. Gasol struggled when Mike D’Antoni was more set on forcing his system on the Lakers personnel. But now what the Lakers run is a shadow of that system (there is pick-and-roll but not the same tempo and there are other changes as well) and Gasol may be a much better fit.

We’ll see. The Lakers need the depth and need the scoring Gasol can provide, first to just make the playoffs and after that to be any kind of threat in them.

I still think this summer he gets traded. But that’s another topic for another day.

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