After being sidelined since Dec. 1 with a left hamstring tear, Jordan Farmar returned to the Lakers lineup Wednesday, starting against the Miami Heat in their Christmas Day showdown.
Not quite an easy transition.
Farmar had missed 10 games with the injury, and his rustiness was apparent in his play against the back-to-back NBA champions. He finished with three points on one-for-seven shooting, five rebounds, two assists and four turnovers in the Lakers' 101-95 loss.
"I felt like I didn't play basketball for a month, just the timing, everything just felt a little off," Farmar said.
Farmar said his hamstring did not feel sore after the game, but he said he may have slightly altered his play because he did not yet fully trust his leg.
"Just knowing that it kept me out for a month, and not wanting to make that explosive move that might set me back," he said. "I'll gain more and more confidence, and then hopefully it'll get out of my mind and I'll just be able to play."
The 27-year-old guard was averaging 9.2 points and 4.4 assists in 18.9 minutes per game this season before suffering the injury.
On Wednesday he played 32½ minutes.
"I haven't even played five-on-five since I got hurt, so this is the first time I've really played basketball," he said.
Of course, the Lakers don't exactly have the option of easing him back into the game considering they are without Steve Nash and Steve Blake.
Lakers Coach Mike D'Antoni said he's just glad Farmar is back on the court, adding that he expects him to make the Lakers a better team very soon.
"His next game will be better," D'Antoni said, "and a week from now he'll be rolling."