With Pau Gasol on the verge of a return from his concussion, Coach Mike D'Antoni has to find a new role for Earl Clark.
Clark (6'10") emerged as a regular contributor and complement to Dwight Howard through Gasol's five-game absence, averaging a double-double with 11.2 points and 10 rebounds. He shot 50% from the field, dished 3.4 assists a game while blocking 1.6 shots.
D'Antoni praised Clark's ability to defend multiple positions, trusting him to guard the likes of high-scoring Monta Ellis of the Milwaukee Bucks and long-time all-star Tim Duncan of the San Antonio Spurs.
Before Gasol went down, Clark wasn't in the rotation.
"So many things went on that Earl got lost in the shop. The whole time he kept working," D'Antoni said. "Our assistant coach kept saying, 'His feet are good. His first steps are good.'"