The Los Angeles Lakers have had Kobe Bryant for 17 seasons and it is strange that the team is fighting for a playoff spot without him. Kobe has been one of the most durable players in the NBA, but even he cannot ignore an Achilles injury.
The Lakers have relied on Bryant very often this season and he had put the team on his shoulders ever since the first game. However, now that Bryant is no longer in the lineup, his teammates must take on a bigger role on both ends of the court. Pau Gasol spoke to USA Today and he talked about what the team needs to do now that Bryant is sidelined with his injury.
“I mean, it’s kind of (fun),” Gasol said of a greater offensive role. “(But) I don’t like why that happened.
“Now we’ve got to carry a little more load. (Howard), myself, a couple of other players are going to have to step up. … Other players that don’t get the same amount of shots get a couple more shots, and they will probably be different shots. They’ll have to work a little harder for their shots.”
Gasol has struggled for most of the season, but he is seeing an increase in touches since Bryant is no longer dominating the ball. Gasol is one of the most talented big men in the league and the Lakers have no problem feeding him in the post. However, Gasol is not the only Laker who has taken a bigger role after Kobe’s injury.
Dwight Howard will be the most important player for the Lakers moving forward, and if they want to make a deep playoff push, Howard has to be leading the charge.
In case you missed it, be sure to check out what Mitch Kupchak had to say about the Lakers amnestying Kobe Bryant!
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