How Antawn Jamison’s Wrist Injury Impacts LA Lakers Down the Stretch

Antawn Jamison isn't Kobe Bryant or Dwight Howard, but he is important to the Los Angeles Lakers, rendering his wrist injury a major concern.

Los Angeles' stretch forward injured his right wrist in the fourth quarter of the Lakers' loss to the Washington Wizards. According to Ramona Shelburne of, Jamison has a slight tear in the wrist but is expected to "gut it out."

Admirable though Jamison's attempt to play through the pain seems, any kind of tear in his wrist doesn't bode well for his shooting or Los Angeles' offense in general.

He's averaging 9.3 points per contest and shooting 47.3 percent from the floor on the season. Since the All-Star break, however, he's posting 11.4 points and 5.5 rebounds on 50 percent shooting a night.

Jamison has also emerged as an integral component of Los Angeles' recent success.

Of all the Lakers' lineups that have played at least 90 minutes together, the one that has yielded the most impressive results consists of Jamison, Bryant, Howard, Steve Nash and Metta World Peace. They're currently outscoring opponents by more than 20 points per 100 possessions.

Even with Pau Gasol back in the rotation, that's a lineup you envision Mike D'Antoni finishing close games with. Howard surrounded by shooters—that's a D'Antoni special.

Jamison's injury, however, stands to change that. A lot.

With Gasol presumably starting from here on out, that leaves Jamison as the leading scorer of a second unit that is already barer than bones. Los Angeles' bench ranks 26th in points per game (27). Losing a scorer of Jamison's caliber isn't a casualty the Lakers can afford to withstand.

They're not losing him, though. He's going to try and play, right?

That he is, which means absolutely nothing.

Not only is Jamison now primed to incur a departure-forcing injury, but even if he manages to po...

About the Author