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The Honolulu Advertiser

Posted at 4:57 p.m., Monday, October 8, 2007

Lakers ready for Warriors

Associated Press

A day before his team opens its preseason with a game against the Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Lakers coach Phil Jackson wasn't ready to publicly announce his starting lineup.

"I haven't thought about it," Jackson said today. "Tomorrow at the shoot around, we'll go through it."

The Lakers starting backcourt of Kobe Bryant and Derek Fisher will be ready to go in tomorrow's opener even though Bryant has been nursing a sore right knee and Fisher sat out some of practice to rest.

Jackson said Fisher was doing well and that he just needed more rest, while Bryant's playing time will be determined by a number of factors.

"I'll have to feel that out as to how the game goes and how the crowd is feeling and how Golden State plays," Jackson said. "It will be a game time decision."

One spot of good news for the Lakers has been the return of center Kwame Brown, who is recovering from ankle and shoulder surgery.

Jackson said Brown could see some playing time tomorrow or in Thursday's game against the Warriors.

"I wouldn't be surprised," he said. "He was held out of practice today because he still had a little soreness, but he was kind of aggressive and active enough and he wants to play, I can tell. The trainer just thought he shouldn't be on his feet running around."

Brown is in a three-way battle for the starting position with Chris Mihm and Andrew Bynum. Mihm is also recovering from surgery but is expected to play.

Another pleasant surprise for the Lakers was the return of power forward Ronny Turiaf, who underwent an MRI Sunday. Results of the test showed Turiaf to have only a bruised knee.

"I thought he played very well today for having a day off and for being sore. Once he got loosened up he seemed to be pretty good," Jackson said.

Forwards Lamar Odom and Luke Walton are the only players who will not see action in either of the two-preseason games. Odom is recovering from off season shoulder surgery and Walton is nursing a strained right hamstring.

Jackson said Vladimir Radmonovic would replace Odom in the starting lineup.