Steve Blake cleared to run on treadmill
After having a checkup Tuesday to assess fractured cartilage connecting a rib to his sternum, Lakers guard Steve Blake has been cleared to begin running on a treadmill.
Blake said after the Lakers' 106-73 victory over the Charlotte Bobcats that he hasn't been given a definitive timetable for his return. But it at least marks a step toward recovery from an injury that has sidelined him for the past 10 games. The only previous rehab entailed rest and ice.
After suffering the injury during a 99-83 victory Jan. 10 over the Phoenix Suns, Blake aggravated it during an overtime victory the next day at Utah, making an awkward twist late in the third quarter. He left that game with 21 seconds remaining in the third quarter, and Lakers trainer Gary Vitti tended to him on the sideline. Although Blake returned to the bench, he didn't play the rest of the game.
The Lakers initially estimated Blake would remain sidelined for three to four weeks, from 11 to 17 games. It remains unclear, however, whether he will return as early as Feb. 3 at Denver.
-- Mark Medina
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