After sitting out since February 5th with a torn plantar fascia, Pau Gasol is finally returning to form.
The big man was seen shooting hoops at Amway Center on Tuesday, though he couldn't quite join the shootaround yet.
Coach Mike D'Antoni talked about Gasol's progress saying:
"He's starting to run now and he feels pretty good. It's six weeks next Tuesday, so it was six-to-eight, so it's close."
The tough part isn't when Gasol is out, however, since they have won eight of their last ten games. The problem is getting Gasol to seamlessly fit back into the lineup. There is no easy solution because the Lakers have been able to properly manipulate D'Antoni's system to fit their skill set, whereas before there was no room for him.
D'Antoni has also been fairly unwilling to drastically change his system in favor of something that will fit a two big man team better.
He talked about this as well, saying:
"We're playing a lot better than we were. We've still got to get Pau back and get him integrated and get to that top tier. We're still not quite there. We've got to smooth some things out."
It will be interesting to see how Gasol fares, since he was very vocal about his displeasure when he was coming off the bench, and D'Antoni has never been too keen on him, for whatever reason.
Hopefully he heals quickly enough to get integrated in the lineup before the playoffs start.