"The prevailing thought during the offseason was that Dwight Howard could be the missing puzzle piece when the curtain came up on the new-look Los Angeles Lakers' 2012-13 season.
It turns out that Kobe Bryant, not Howard, could be the one who starts out the season sidelined.
Bryant sat out Sunday's practice, using the time to receive treatment on the strained right foot he hurt a full week ago during the team's exhibition game against the Sacramento Kings.
With the Lakers' season opener just two days away against the Dallas Mavericks at Staples Center, Bryant remains out indefinitely according to the team and his availability for Tuesday has started to be called into question by his teammates.
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