Down 2-0 in their first round series, the Los Angeles Lakers returned home after failing to win either game against the Spurs. The Lakers added injuries to the insults hurled at them in Game 2 in San Antonio. By the time practice finished on Thursday in El Segundo, Steve Blake was ruled out of Game 3, and optimistically listed as Steve Nash and Jodie Meeks were doubtful.
When asked about who would start in the backcourt, Mike D’Antoni said Darius Morris figured to be involved, and D'Antoni appeared hopeful Nash would be back, as well. According to the coach, Nash was more likely to play than Meeks. The 39-year-old Canadian took two epidural injections on his back and a cortisone shot to his hip on Thursday, and his status was officially listed as doubtful.
If Nash was unable to play, Chris Duhon and Andrew Goudelock were the two remaining backcourt options for the injury-plagued Lakers.
After referencing his background as a point guard, Dwight Howard was asked if he may assume the role should the Lakers have any further injuries.
“Just so Steve [Nash] won’t have to use his legs as much. Just let me bring the ball up the court. Then, once we get to half court, I can give it to him. Then, we can set up the play,” Howard jested at Thursday’s practice.
Nash was asked if he had any regrets or second-guesses about returning early from his hamstring injury.
“No,” the point guard started out. “If I wait, the playoffs could be over. So, I felt like I had to give it a try when I was able to at least change ends of the floor.”
Nash also answered questions about age being a factor. He admitted that age was a relevant but argued that blaming age was a shortsighted view to his injuries this season.
“I think it’d be foolish not to say that [age] could play some part, but I also think it’s really myopic to think that because I’ve finally had an injury bug that it’s age,” Nash argued. “Everybody gets hurt at some point.”
Unfortunately, this point happens to be the worst possible time for the Lakers. Down 2-0 in the best of seven series, the injured Lakers host the Spurs for Game 3 on Friday night at Staples Center.