Despite shooting guard Kobe Bryant‘s early season struggles, Lakers coach Byron Scott said that he doesn’t intend to cut down on the veteran’s minutes, Eric Pincus of The Los Angeles Times relays. “I have not considered that yet. It’s too early in the season,” said Scott, who also noted that he doesn’t believe Bryant is suffering from fatigue. “I think he’s averaging about 30 minutes a game. He’s still getting plenty of rest. I don’t think so — maybe [he] is, but in my opinion watching it, I don’t think so. Obviously he’s struggling right now with his shot. In the last few days, he said he feels great. I don’t think it’s a matter of him being tired, or his legs behind tired, I think it’s just a matter of his timing being a little off.”
Here’s more from the Pacific Division:
- Jon Leuer, whom Phoenix acquired in a draft day trade this year from Memphis, has been a hidden gem off the Suns‘ bench this season, writes Ben York of NBA.com. Over his last three appearances, Leuer is averaging 10 points per game while shooting 63% from the floor and an amazing 60% from beyond the 3-point line.
- Clippers coach Doc Rivers continues to experiment with his rotation in an effort to find the right mix, and swingman Wesley Johnson may be utilized as a starter more often going forward thanks to the energy he brings to the court, notes Ben Bolch of The Los Angeles Times. “I like Wes the most because of his size and his ability to shoot, but there’s nights where you play a great offensive player at that spot and we may go with a defensive guy. We’re going to just keep moving it around,” Rivers said. If Johnson is moved into a more prominent role with the team it may affect his decision regarding exercising his $1,227,286 player option for 2016/17, especially with the salary cap set to increase markedly, though that is merely my speculation.
- Kings coach George Karl is still acclimating himself to the team’s new players, but Karl does believe that Sacramento’s current roster is far superior to last season’s squad as far as talent goes, Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee writes.