Scott: Bryant “feels pretty good” for Sunday when Lakers host Suns

first_img“When we sit down and talk and come up with a game plan,” Scott said, “we’ll try to stick to that game plan to the best of my abilities.”Loose lipsLakers forward Nick Young has collected three technical fouls within the past week, something that prompted him to joke he’s the “new Rasheed Wallace.”Young has a long way to go. Wallace remains the NBA’s all-time leader in technical fouls (317). Young picked up two technicals last week amid a flagrant foul 2 against Oklahoma City’s Steven Adams that resulted in an ejection. On Friday, Young was assessed a technical foul with 5:19 left in the second quarter for arguing with referees for a foul after committing a turnover. Despite Lakers assistant coach Jim Eyen attempting to calm Young down, the Lakers forward kept chirping to officials during a timeout. “You can blame some calls on the ref, but we can’t talk about that stuff,” Young said. “If we talk about the refs, we might get fined.”That did not stop Young from biting his tongue. “Refs need to take a look at film and should get fined for certain calls they miss,” Young said. “But we’re good. I like the refs, the NBA and (commissioner) Adam Silver. I’m here.” Ratings spikeIt turns out the NBA ratings fare better without Bryant. Despite his absence, the Lakers-Bulls game on Christmas Day drew 3.9 million viewers on the TNT telecast, marking the highest rated and most-viewed prime-time game televised on Christmas. Of course, plenty of those eyeballs likely stemmed from the possibility Bryant would suit up. Bryant sat out the Lakers’ 102-98 loss to the Dallas Mavericks on Friday at American Airlines Arena, marking the third consecutive game he missed this week to rest his fatigued and sore 36-year-old body. Scott reported that Bryant “feels pretty good” about playing on Sunday when the Lakers host the Phoenix Suns at Staples Center, though more clarity will emerge following Saturday’s practice and Sunday’s morning shootaround. But could the Lakers have avoided all of this had Scott outlined a more conservative approach with Bryant’s playing time?“Maybe,” Scott said. “We both thought the 30-to-40 minute mark was pretty good. Obviously we’ll have to adjust that a little bit.”Bryant did not speak to reporters on Friday in Dallas, but he said on Christmas Day in Chicago that he feels receptive toward a stricter minute restriction. After Bryant averaged 24.6 points albeit on a career-low 37.2 percent clip in 35.4 minutes per game, Scott predicted he will play Bryant between 32 and 33 minutes per game and avoid playing him all of the first and third quarters. Bryant had exceeded Scott’s 30-to-40 minutes threshold three times because of two overtime games and one game that featured four days before the Lakers’ next contest. DALLAS — Well before Kobe Bryant would begin his quest this season to delay Father Time’s clock, Lakers coach Byron Scott envisioned handling his star player with care.But a quarter into the 2014-15 season, Scott admitted he just didn’t know how much that would entail. “This is something that’s new for both of us,” Scott said. “We’re trying to learn this on the fly as much as possible.”RELATED: Lakers’ issues go beyond Bryant in 102-98 loss to Dallascenter_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img