The Lakers play the Timberwolves in Minneapolis in the second-game of what could be a tell-tale seven-game road trip for the team's playoff chances.
Howard has been grappling with a torn labrum in his right shoulder, and re-aggravated the injury in a loss to the Phoenix Suns on Wednesday night. Howard had to leave the game in the fourth quarter, clearing the way for a 13-point collapse and a seventh straight road loss for the Lakers.
The Lakers medical staff had deemed Howard as "day-to-day" with the shoulder. Howard originally injured the shoulder in early January, and missed three games before returning to the Lakers lineup. After leaving the game against Phoenix, Howard told reporters that the pain in the shoulder was the worst it had felt since the original injury.
The Lakers are 20-26, in 10th place in the Western Conference, four games out of the eighth and final playoff spot. Howard is averaging 16.5 points, 11.9 rebounds and 2.4 blocks for the Lakers.
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