Howard to return after treatment
BY MIKE BRESNAHAN Los Angeles Times
Sunday, February 03, 2013
2/03/13 at 7:08 AM
AUBURN HILLS, Mich. - Center Dwight Howard is expected to play for the Lakers on Sunday against Detroit after making a quick trip to Los Angeles for a minor shoulder procedure.
"He's going to give it a go," said a person familiar with the situation but unauthorized to comment publicly.
Howard missed the Lakers' 111-100 victory Friday against the Minnesota Timberwolves so he could return home for a platelet-rich plasma, or PRP, treatment in his right shoulder.
But will the still-evolving science work? Howard and the Lakers obviously hoped so, though it apparently was of little help to another Lakers player last month.
"I really didn't feel the effects of it," said guard Steve Blake, who had PRP injections to try to heal a groin injury. "They said it varies person to person. It's obviously hurting (Howard). He's a big strong guy. He takes a lot of hard hits. He plays through a lot of it. Sometimes it comes to a point where it's hard to play through things."
Howard has sat out four games because of a torn labrum in his shoulder and left two others, including Wednesday's 92-86 loss to Phoenix. The PRP injections are meant to stimulate healing and growth in the afflicted area.
Blake wasn't surprised that Howard planned to return Sunday from the relatively non-invasive procedure in which a small amount of blood was drawn from the shoulder, spun in a centrifuge for about 20 minutes and reinjected into the shoulder after concentrated platelets were isolated.
The Lakers (21-26) need Howard to feel the effects immediately. They are 1-1 on their seven-game Grammy trip and only 6-16 on the road this season.