Kobe Bryant looking good on trip; Andrew Bynum still not ready to play
Kobe Bryant hasn’t practiced consistently this year because of his surgically-repaired right knee, but he has looked good during the first two games of the Lakers' three-game trip that finishes Friday night in Minnesota against the Timberwolves.
But that hasn't been the case for Andrew Bynum and his quest to return from right knee surgery.
Bynum was on the court with Lakers assistant coach Chuck Person Wednesday night in Detroit, but the center probably won't be ready to play anytime soon.
Lakers Coach Phil Jackson said after practice Thursday that he told Bynum he would like him to be ready to play Dec. 10 when the Lakers start a six-game trip to the East Coast against the Chicago Bulls.
Jackson said Bynum probably will practice with the Lakers on Monday.
“It looks to me like we just have to say, 'We want this to be right,' ” Jackson said. “And we want him to last for a whole season. We don’t want to rush this.”
Bryant hasn't practiced much, but it hasn't been a problem lately.
He's averaging 32 points on 48.8% (21-for-43 shooting) in the first two road games.
He's also averaging eight rebounds and 3.5 assists. His three-point shooting hasn't been good, though. Bryant is making only 30% (three-for-10) of his threes.
“He’s benefited a lot from staying off the court and being strong and ready to play,” Jackson said. “Sometimes his shooting is just not right, but he still finds a way to score points.”
Ron Artest has been playing with a sore back, but he will play Friday night against the Timberwolves.
-- Broderick Turner, reporting from Minnealpolis