Lakers center Dwight Howard, according to Coach Mike Brown, gave two forearm… (Reed Saxon / Associated…)
Mike Brown says he hasn't the slightest idea when Dwight Howard will play in a game, appear in full five-on-five contact drills or fully recover from back surgery.
But the Lakers center performed a few moves in Friday's practice that left Brown fairly excited -- and basketball operations assistant Kyle Triggs a bit wounded.
"Kyle took two forearm shivers to the throat," Brown said after Friday morning's practice at the Lakers' facility in El Segundo. "That knocked him on his behind twice in a row. Dwight is a charismatic guy. He's a fun-loving guy. But when he needs to get nasty, he's going to get nasty."
So is Triggs holding up OK?
"Kyle is," Brown said. "I told Dwight, 'It's OK, you can do that because the Lakers thanks to Dr. Buss, they provide great dental coverage and medical coverage. Kyle's fine. He's tough, anyway. He's from West Virginia.'"
With the NBA announcing that it will fine players up to $30,000 and possible suspension for excess flopping, it was only appropriate if Brown wondered if Triggs performed that in hopes of drawing a charge. It'd be understandable, considering the the pain Howard's 6-11, 255-pound frame could cause as he bulldozes into the lane or dives for a loose ball.
"It wasn't a flop," Brown said. "Kyle doesn't make that much money. I can't suspend Kyle because he's my carpool guy. If he's suspended it will take me 2 1/2 hours to get to work instead of an hour."
As for Howard, the Lakers have penciled him out only of Sunday's preseason opener against Golden State in Fresno. Howard didn't speak to reporters Friday, but he's mentioned this week that he won't return until his back feels 100%. The Lakers have seven other exhibition games before their season opener Oct. 30 against the Dallas Mavericks.
"I don't have a rule where a guy has to play an X amount of games before they play in the opener," Brown said. "He can play one game and still play. He may not play at all and still play in the opener. Whenever they release him. The biggest thing for me is as long as he's at practice beforehand."
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