The Los Angeles Lakers will be without Pau Gasol for a fifth straight game on Tuesday with the Spanish forward sitting out against the Cleveland Cavaliers according to Mark Medina of the L.A. Daily News via Twitter:
Pau Gasol won’t play tonight against Cleveland. Marks his fifth straight absence bc of knee tendinitis
— Mark Medina (@MedinaLakersNBA) December 11, 2012
Head coach Mike D’Antoni will likely go with Antawn Jamison once as his starting power forward and Jordan Hill coming off the bench against the Cavaliers. Along with Gasol out for a fifth consecutive game while dealing with tendinitis in both knees, the Lakers will also be without Steve Nash once again as he’ll miss his 20th game in a row.
Nash’s return date was pushed back yet again Tuesday with the two-time NBA MVP expected to miss two more weeks due to the leg fracture suffered on Halloween against the Portland Trail Blazers. If the latest projection for Nash’ return to the floor is correct, the veteran point guard will likely be back for the Christmas Day showdown with D’Antoni’s former team in the New York Knicks.
The absence of Nash remains costly for the Lakers with the team and coaching staff anxiously awaiting his return. The fate of Gasol will coincide with Nash’s return as the Lakers’ front office will determine whether or not the two-time NBA champion is fit for the team’s new system with Nash running the show in the backcourt.