Saturday , Feb , 02 , 2013 Matt Formica

Gasol returns to starting lineup and Lakers win

Should Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni ever have removed Pau Gasol from the starting lineup?

Hoopsvibe’s quick call:  Not after Pau’s performance last night.

Gasol returned to LA’s starting lineup against the Minnesota Timberwolves last night dropping 22 points while hauling in 12 rebounds in his return.

Pau started for Dwight Howard, who is currently out with another shoulder injury.

The Lakers beat the T-Wolves 111-100 to snap their 8-game road losing skid, and now have a 20-game winning streak against Minnesota; the longest active win streak in the NBA.

But it was a huge game for Gasol, who has been the subject of numerous criticism and trade rumors for the past few seasons.

"It was a good feeling out there.  Like the good old days," Gasol said.

Superstar Kobe Bryant added 17 points and 12 rebounds in the win.

"It’s been a rough season so far, no way around it," Gasol continued.  "Just stay with it, keep playing.  You never know when things can change direction.  Just play your game when you’re out there.  Tonight I was able to start, play more minutes, get a good flow."

Who knows how long Gasol being in the starting lineup will last.  I’m sure it will depend heavily on the timeline of Dwight Howard’s return, which is yet to be known.  Howard flew back to LA for medical attention this weekend.

But what do you think, Hoopsvibers??  Should Gasol be starting for good?  Leave your comments below!

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