Steve Blake Goes Down, So Kobe Moves to Point?

Can Kobe Bryant play point guard? We’re about to find out.

Five days after Bryant returned to the lineup, the Los Angeles Lakers announced Thursday point guard Steve Blake has a torn ligament in his right elbow and will miss at least six weeks. Blake was injured in November but played with the injury for nearly three weeks, according to the Lakers.

The Lakers already are down Steve Nash and Jordan Farmar at point guards. Nash has a nerve issue in his back and could return to the lineup soon but has had diminished effectiveness this season. Farmar is expected to miss at least most of this month because of a left hamstring tear.

“Three, you would think, would be enough to get you through the year,” Blake said. “For all of us to be out at the same time is pretty rare, I think.”

Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni confirmed Bryant, a natural shooting guard, and sharpshooter Jodie Meeks will start in the backcourt for Friday’s game against the Oklahoma City Thunder. Xavier Henry, also a natural shooting guard, will run the point guard spot when the team turns to the bench.

“We’ll continue to look, but to find a player that can come in and play in front of Xavier, Jodie and Kobe is unlikely,” Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak said, via’s Mike Trudell.

Blake, a 10-year NBA veteran, has been a primary contributor for the Lakers with Nash out of the lineup. He was averaging 9.8 points and 7.7 assists in a team-high 31.9 minutes a game. He said he would have surgery if he were a baseball player but will avoid it.

“It’s been a tough break, not only for myself but for the Lakers in general,” Blake said. “Still a little in shock right now that I’m having another injury and having to sit out. I was really enjoying the way things were going. It is tough.”

Bryant spent time at point guard during his first two games back and is the only healthy play-maker left on the Lakers’ roster. But the former NBA MVP is not an ideal fit at a position where players will be smaller and faster than him, particularly coming off Achilles tendon surgery. Bryant also has 11 turnovers to seven assists in his two games this season.

The shift should be a test for Bryant.

“I don’t really have a choice right now,” Bryant said. “I’ve got to get out there and do a lot more than expected in terms of handling the ball and doing significantly more running.”

Chris Duhon, who played point guard last season for the Lakers, is a free agent, but the Lakers seem willing to stay put.

“It’s hard to bring somebody in this quick, knowing Farmar is coming back, but if it makes sense, we will,” D’Antoni said.

Written by Nick


Nick the Quick White is an avid fan of basketball and hip hop, and a contributing writer with WJS since 2013. Nick has interviewed rappers, ballers, rapper ballers, and baller rappers on the site and continues to preach that the NBA should have a team in Europe. Maybe because Nick currently lives outside London where to them Football is actually played with your feet, can you believe this fatuousness?

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