Pau Gasol continues to nurse a strained right hamstring. The strain has forced him out of five exhibition games already and Coach Phil Jackson has stated Gasol will not play in their preseason finale.
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The hamstring is a group of muscles, the semitendinosus, the semimembranosus, and the short and long heads of the biceps femoris. These muscles work together to bend the knee (knee flexion) and bring the leg backwards (hip extension). When strained, these motions can be limited and painful to perform. This injury can be particularly bothersome in basketball where quick cuts and explosive, dynamic movement are required. Gasol has been shut down for the remainder of the preseason as the team hopes rest and treatment will allow for the injury to mend. Monitor Gasolís status up until opening night but expect the Lakers to take it easy to insure this issue does not become a lingering one.
Gasolís frontcourt mate is dealing with an injury of his own, as Andrew Bynum is battling a strained rotator cuff in his right shoulder. The shoulder is a ball-and-socket joint in which the upper arm bone, the humerus, sits within the scapula, or shoulder blade. The head of the humerus (the ball) is free to move around an indefinite number of axis while the glenohumeral ligaments and surrounding musculature help constrain it within the glenoid cavity of the scapula (the socket). The primary muscles that help reinforce the shoulder joint are the rotator muscles that make up the rotator cuff. These four muscles, the supraspinatus, infraspinatus, subscapularis, and teres minor, like their name suggests, enable the arm to rotate inward and outward. When the arm is overstretched the tendons of the muscles can be strained limiting a personís ability to fully rotate the arm.
Fortunately Bynumís sprain appears minor and he should be ready to go when the Lakers open the season against their in-house rival, the Clippers.
This appears to be the case with Rose as it has been reported that he has an inflamed tendon in the ankle in as well as the sprain. Rose has been sidelined since the injury occurred but returned to practice on Thursday. If the ankle and tendon show no signs of a setback or excessive inflammation expect the reigning Rookie of the Year to be in Chicagoís starting lineup.
The prognosis is not as positive for Jeffersonís teammate forward Kevin Love. Love fractured the fourth metacarpal bone in his left hand in a preseason game against Chicago. The metacarpal bones are the long bones that make up the hand and sit between the carpal bones of the wrist and the phalanges of the finger. Love underwent surgery Tuesday and had three screws inserted into his hand. Love is expected to miss six to eight weeks while recovering. When Love does return he may be forced to wear a protective glove similar to the one Dallas Mavericks guard Jason Terry wore after he suffered a similar injury last season.
Article first appeared on 10/26/09