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Bryant and Gasol practice, set to return Friday

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Kobe Bryant returned to practice today for the first time, while Pau Gasol took part for the second consecutive day. Both are set to return tomorrow night versus the Washington Wizards, according to the Los Angeles Times:

Kobe Bryant participated in a five-on-five scrimmage Thursday. So did Pau Gasol.

Bryant left a little early because his sprained left ankle stiffened a bit, but Lakers Coach Mike D’Antoniwasn’t concerned about his availability Friday against Washington.

“He’ll be ready,” D’Antoni said.

Gasol missed 20 games because of a tear inside the bottom of his right foot. He will play limited minutes Friday while simultaneously trying to get in shape.

“It’s not good,” Gasol said of his conditioning. “But I’ll continue to work on it and it’ll continue to get better.”

The combination of Bryant, Gasol, Dwight Howard, Steve Nash and Steve Blake have only played two games together all year, per Mike Trudell.

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