Mitch Kupchak Expects Nash and Gasol To Participate In Training Camp

Steve Nash and Pau GasolWith the Los Angeles Lakers not having the smoothest offseason, many have wondered how this team will look next season. With Kobe Bryant recovering from Achilles surgery, Dwight Howard leaving town for Houston, and the health of Steve Nash and Pau Gasol up in the air, there isn’t much to feel great about in Lakerland.

With so much uncertainty, some feel it might be in the Lakers best interest to mail it in during the 2013-2014 season and get into the lottery, which is expected to be a deep draft next summer.

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Not so fast, however. In a new interview with the Los Angeles Time’ Mike Bresnahan, Mitch Kupchak expects both Nash and Gasol to be at training camp and ready to go when camp opens up in two months.

“I expect both those guys to participate in training camp. Kobe is obviously the wild card right now,” Kupchak said.”I spoke to Pau about two weeks ago for 45 minutes. He said he feels a lot better than he did a month ago. He was optimistic that he’d be ready for training camp.

With both Gasol and Nash being ready to go, it gives the Lakers the assurance that two of their three best players will be ready for the season’s start. That could quiet any remaining “tanking” rumors surrounding the Lakers. Gasol, who turned 33 earlier this month, was plagued with injuries all of last season, forcing him to miss 33 games.

Nash, 39, dealt with the most frustrating season of his career as the two-time MVP sat out 32 games himself. However, Kupchak talked about Nash and his progress this offseason, saying:

We saw Nash out here last week. If I had to guess, he feels he’s in the 90th-percentile of where he wants to be. We still have two more months.”

Nash, who could barely move in the playoffs after dealing lingering injury issues, might be handling the ball a lot more next season than he did last season. With Bryant’s status still up in the air, Nash will be as important as ever for the Lakers.

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