Lakers Practice: Kobe Bryant ‘Upbeat,’ Nick Young’s Status

Byron Scott

The Los Angeles Lakers practiced on Friday morning before getting ready to hop on the road to embark on their nine-day Grammy trip. With their first stop in New York, the Lakers take on Carmelo Anthony and a struggling Knicks team, with plenty of familiar faces in head coach Derek Fisher, assistant coach Kurt Rambis and president Phil Jackson.

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With a record of 9-38, Lakers head coach Byron Scott says the Lakers have to be prepared for the Knicks to come out fighting:

I think the thing that concerns me the most is the fact that they’ve been losing just like us so it’s like having a wild animal backed in a corner, they’re going to come out fighting so we just have to be ready for them.”

Lakers guard Wayne Ellington, who’s put together quite an impressive stretch of games, said Sunday’s game is going to be a “dog fight.” Ellington is thankful for the opportunity he’s been given and while Kobe Bryant’s injury is awful, knows this is a chance to prove himself and fight for a contract.

I’m hungry and I’ve got a lot to prove,” Ellington said after practice.

Speaking of Kobe Bryant, Scott said he talked with him at Staples Center last night and he sounded “upbeat.” According to Scott, Bryant sat in on their pre-game meeting and chatted with his teammates before leaving Staples Center.

It’s not clear whether Nick Young (ankle sprain) will be available for Sunday’s game. Scott said Young did some shooting at practice, but wants to see Young make lateral movements (run and cut), before putting him in a game.

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