OAKLAND — Lamar Odom was diagnosed with a bone bruise in his right knee, leaving the Lakers even more short-handed in the near future.
Odom did not play Wednesday against Golden State and was officially listed as day-to-day, though bones bruises can take extra time to heal, anywhere from a few days to a few weeks to . . . well, Coach Phil Jackson didn't really want to go there.
"Have you ever had a bone bruise? It takes a while," he said. "It's a tough one. We're still not out of the woods with this just because of that diagnosis."
MRI exam results revealed the bruise while Odom was being examined by team doctor Steve Lombardo on Wednesday morning in Los Angeles.
Odom was injured after banging into New Orleans guard Chris Paul while the Hornets guard attempted a driving layup with 3:03 left in the second quarter of Tuesday's game.
Odom, who was called for a foul on the play, was averaging 8.8 points, 6.1 rebounds and 2.3 assists in 26 minutes a game.
The Lakers' next game is Friday against Indiana, though Jackson did not sound as if he expected Odom to suit up.
"I'm not pinning any hopes on that," he said. "We'd like to have him play, but we're not planning on that."
In the interim, it means more minutes for Josh Powell, who entered with 2:49 left in the first quarter, right around the time Odom typically checked into the game.
Powell had four points and four rebounds in 14 minutes. His dunk on a fastbreak feed from Derek Fisher gave the Lakers their biggest lead, 41-24, with 7:59 left in the second quarter.
It hurts him
Which player will be affected the most by Odom's absence?
Kobe Bryant, according to Jackson.
Odom shifted from power forward to more of a guard role this season, which meant Bryant could move down to a forward spot or on the wing and attack from there.
Now, Bryant will have to set up shop up top.
"I think he has to play on the court as a guard more often," Jackson said.
Sun not sitting
Rookie Sun Yue was pressed into action Wednesday despite not being entirely comfortable with the triangle offense.
He was called for traveling shortly after entering the game and finished with no points in three minutes
It was actually an improvement compared to a game last month in which Sun had four fouls and two turnovers in the last five minutes against Milwaukee.
Sun was expected to play in the Development League at some point this season, but he won't be getting sent down in the foreseeable future because of all the Lakers' injuries.
"He has practiced hard, he's worked hard at his game. He's not ready yet, but he's going to have to play," Jackson said. "He's just going to have to play because it's called upon him right now."
Trevor Ariza has been an obvious boon to the Lakers' defense this season, even guarding point guards from time to time.
Said Jackson: "Can we clone him, and have him in two or three other spots?"