Gasol goes down in Lakers win over Nets

February 6, 2013, 11:11 AM

By KEVIN DING, ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER

NEW YORK– Pau Gasol tried on a walking boot but wound up settling for crutches to make his way out of Barclays Center, his girlfriend waiting outside with obvious concern over what could be a serious injury to Gasol’s right foot.

Gasol said he felt “a pop” ? an indication that he might have torn his troublesome plantar fascia late in the Lakers’ 92-83 victory over the Brooklyn Nets on Tuesday.

Such a diagnosis would likely put Gasol out a month or more, although more details will be revealed by an MRI on Wednesday.

Gasol said he was told there are “different degrees of tears. That’s what could determine one thing or another and how much time.”

Gasol’s injury took the shine off one of the Lakers’ best victories of the season — the team overcoming the absences of Dwight Howard with his sore right shoulder and Metta World Peace, suspended one game earlier in the day by the NBA for his incident Sunday in Detroit.

Even with Gasol going down as he tried to jump on the foot with four-plus minutes to play, the Lakers persevered for their sixth victory in seven games.

The Lakers were 0-3 in games without Howard and Gasol earlier this season, though they’ve now gone 3-0 in games without Howard but with Gasol.

Forward Earl Clark stepped up with 14 points, 12 rebounds and no turnovers Tuesday, and he and Antawn Jamison, who replaced the injured Gasol, got late buckets off Steve Nash setups to go with two key drives to the basket by Kobe Bryant. It was just the sort of offensive balance and defensive toughness the Lakers have been seeking this season.

But Bryant sat a long time after the game in the trainer’s room while Gasol got postgame treatment. Bryant later said he is “very, very concerned, to say the least” about Gasol’s foot.

“We can’t afford to lose Pau for a long stretch,” said Bryant, who played through a sprained right elbow and had 21 points, eight rebounds and four steals.

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