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Lakers rumors: Dwight Howard injury could open roster spot for rookie

With the status of newly-acquired Los Angeles Lakers center Dwight Howard up in the air as he recovers from a back injury, a roster spot could be available for rookie center Ronnie Aguilar to make the roster.

Per Marc Spears of Yahoo! Sports via Twitter, the 7-footer out of Colorado State University is a "dark horse" to make the team out of training camp. This news is indicative of the Lakers' commitment to taking Howard's rehab cautiously. The team has not made a firm indication of how long he may be out, but the their willingness to move forward and add more depth at center suggests he could miss at least some regular season games.

Howard averaged 20.6 points and 14.5 rebounds per game in 2011 and brings a new dynamic of athleticism and speed to the center position that the team was missing with former Lakers All-Star Andrew Bynum. In Howard's absence, the team's young big men will have big shoes to fill.