The Los Angeles Lakers finally received some positive news on the injury front on Tuesday as Jodie Meeks will be back in time to face the Houston Rockets on Wednesday. Meeks has been sidelined since Feb. 4 with a sprained ankle sustained against the Minnesota Timberwolves. It will be interesting to see what Mike D’Antoni does with the starting lineup; will he bench Kendall Marshall after he just put up 14 points and 17 assists against the Oklahoma City Thunder? Or will he go small and start Meeks with Marshall and Steve Blake? Or will he just bring Meeks off the bench? I’m fascinated which way D’Antoni will screw this one up. He’ll probably start Shawne Williams at center.
All kidding aside, Meeks brings much-needed perimeter shooting to a group that has shot only 28.5 percent from downtown in the past three games. The fifth-year guard out of Kentucky is shooting a career-high 40.3 percent from three point land this season. He seemed to be the one guy at the Lakers practice facility on Monday who wasn’t concerned about being traded while Pau Gasol and Jordan Farmar probably won’t play on Wednesday more than likely out of anxiety of being dealt ahead of Thursday’s trade deadline.
Once thing is for sure; it will be an emotional night as Dwight Howard returns for the first time to face his old team at Staples Center. Meeks was one of the few guys on the team Howard was cordial with, but all of that will be cast aside as nothing will feel better for this current group of Lakers than knocking off their former teammate that spurned them last summer.
Unfortunately for Meeks, he will probably have to match up with the “Human Foul Drawer” in James Harden which is not exactly the ideal way to come back off an ankle injury. Regardless, Meeks will give it his all as is his status quo which will keep this game more competitive than it would have been without him.