Los Angeles Lakers v Denver Nuggets

Ty Lawson says he still can’t run on bad ankle, training slowed until maybe July

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It’s the off-season, Ty Lawson can let his ankle rest. There is no game tomorrow, or the day after that, for him. Remember Lawson missed the final 10 games of the regular season with a severely sprained left ankle.

By now he thought he would be in full speed training for next season, looking to help the Nuggets bounce back from a disappointing and injury-filled 2013-14 season.

Not yet — Lawson still can’t run on his ankle and so his off-season training remains on hold, he told the Denver Post.

“I still can’t run,” Lawson said by phone from Valencia, Spain, for NBA 3X, a 3-on-3 tournament sponsored by the league. “They said it’s no surgery, just another three or four weeks just staying off of it, not really doing too much and it should be fine….

“I didn’t think it was that bad, either, until seven weeks after it happened and I still couldn’t run,” Lawson said. “So I was like, ‘I need to get this checked out.'”

The doctors didn’t find any structural issues, which is the good news for Lawson, who averaged 17.6 points and 8.8 assists per game last season, both career highs. The problem was he played in just 62 games due to injury.

The Nuggets were without Danilo Gallinari all season and JaVale McGee for nearly all, combine that with the Lawson injuries and the Nuggets never really had a chance. Not in an unforgiving and deep Western Conference.

However, if all those guys are back next season and the Nuggets are out and running for Brian Shaw, this could be another 50+ win team in the West.

Chris Paul, after breaking finger, intends to play in Clippers preseason game tomorrow

Chris Paul
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Chris Paul broke his finger Saturday.

The initial diagnosis said the injury wasn’t serious.

Here’s confirmation.

Ben Bolch of the Los Angeles Times:

Paul obviously wouldn’t push it during the preseason. If the Clippers are allowing him to play, this can’t be bad.

Really, the most challenging aspect to this is grasping the concept that a broke finger can be a minor injury.

Report: David Lee, Tyler Zeller in line to start for Celtics; Jared Sullinger, Jonas Jerebko out of rotation

MADRID, SPAIN - OCTOBER 08: David Lee of Boston Celtics attacks during the friendlies of the NBA Global Games 2015 basketball match between Real Madrid and Boston Celtics at Barclaycard Center on October 8, 2015 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)
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Brad Stevens has a big challenge this year – sorting the Celtics’ deep roster of similarly able players.

It seems that process is shaking out at power forward and center.

A. Sherrod Blakely of CSN Northeast:

it appears Boston’s first four bigs will be starters David Lee and Tyler Zeller, with Amir Johnson and Kelly Olynyk off the bench.

That leaves Jonas Jerebko and Jared Sullinger, potentially on the outside looking in as far as the regular rotation is concerned.

Lee is the best passer of the bunch, which could partially explain why he’s starting. Boston’s most likely starting point guard, Marcus Smart, is still growing into the role of the lead ball-handler at the NBA level. Lee and presumptive starting shooting guard Avery Bradley can take some pressure off him.

Olynyk can space the floor for Isaiah Thomas-Johnson pick-and-rolls with the reserves and run pick-and-pops with Thomas himself.

I’m a little surprised Zeller is starting over Johnson, though. The Celtics just signed Johnson to a $12 million salary, and I thought they’d rely on his defense to set a tone early. Like Johnson, Zeller is a quality pick-and-roll finisher who can thrive with Thomas.

This is particularly bad news for Sullinger, who – barring a surprising contract extension – is entering a contract year. It seems those reports of offseason conditioning haven’t yet paid off. Jerebko’s deal also isn’t guaranteed beyond this season, but at least he has already gotten his mid-sized payday. Sullinger is still on his rookie-scale contract.