SH Blog: Kobe Bryant sounds off on Pau Gasol, Nash status still uncertain

Here’s something you may not have expected to hear after the first 17 games of the NBA season: the Lakers are 8-9, two games back from the Golden State Warriors in the standings.

Why do the Warriors keep winning games, despite missing their main defensive weapons in Andrew Bogut and Brandon Rush? David Lee spoke with us to explain his team’s success on Sheridan Hoops Radio on Monday.

What does it mean for the Lakers, who many expected would dominate and even challenge the Bulls best regular season record of all time?

Just one thing: stay patient.

There are several things working against the Lakers right now:

– Dwight Howard is still not himself yet, despite some statistical games that would indicate otherwise.

– Steve Nash remains out due to a broken leg.

– Nash’s backup Steve Blake also remains out with a torn ab muscle (more on that below).

– Pau Gasol is playing the worst basketball of his career.

Steve Nash remains out due to a broken leg. 

Mike D’Antoni, who has had some terrible luck with point guard availability over the past couple of seasons, was brought onto this team to do one thing: help Nash run the team like it was meant to be run. Without Nash, it simply isn’t fair to judge the Lakers right now. That may sound a bit like a cop-out, but there’s a big difference between having one of the best point guards in the history of basketball run your offense, versus Darius Morris who – forget running an offense – has no handles and looks relieved to have gotten the ball past half court most of the time.

Remember how the Knicks started out last season without a true point guard? Looking at their success this season, it’s obvious that all they needed was a steady point guard to restore order and put everyone else in position to do what they were meant to do, rather than compensate for the lack of a floor leader.

It remains to be seen whether Nash can cure the mysterious drop in production from Gasol, and there’s no guarantee that Howard’s back will be fully recovered this season. Still, he holds the key to naturalize everything for the Lakers. You may wonder how Nash changes what they’ve lacked on the defensive end, but consistent offense leads to consistent defense as well, folks.

So when will Nash be back, exactly? And how is Kobe Bryant handling the current losing record? Just how badly hurt is Steve Blake? All those answers can be found below:

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