In a game against the Atlanta Hawks, LeBron James injured his ankle. While King James played the game for some time after the injury, he was diagnosed with a high ankle sprain that sidelined him for weeks. The Los Angeles Lakers have now been playing without Anthony Davis and LeBron James for weeks, the duo slowly inching towards their return.
As of now, James will not be playing against the Lakers upcoming game against the Utah Jazz. The defending champions will take on the league-leading Utah Jazz on Monday, 10:00 PM EST (Tuesday, 7:30 AM IST). Apart from Davis and James, Jared Dudley is the only other player out for the Lakers.
LeBron James, clearly better with his knee this week, has been eager to return. Last game, he was seen rehabbing at the sidelines as the Lakers edged past the Jazz with a 127-115 score. James' injury has also been compared to his injury during his last year with the Cleveland Cavaliers, where he missed four weeks after training camp.
Davis, on the other hand, could return in around a week or so. LeBron James, according to ESPN's Arian Wojnarowski, might follow.
While the Lakers might not be ready to get the duo back unless they are completely healed, James and Davis are itching to return to the court. James, per reports, has been waking up as early as 5:00 AM to rehab and aim towards an early return. "The weatherman says the weather is changing soon and it predicts a thunderstorm is coming," James wrote in an earlier IG post, adding that everyone needs to prepare and taking proper caution.
James, who was in line for another MVP award in his career after the title, was scoring 25.4 points, 7.9 rebounds and 7.9 assists per game. The Lakers have been affected without their two star players, struggling to secure straight wins. After their last win over the Jazz, the Lakers will look to bag the two-game series at home.
With 42 wins and 15 losses, the Utah Jazz are leading the Western Conference and the league. The Phoenix Suns and Los Angeles Clippers follow. The Lakers, on the other hand, are ranked fifth in the West 35-22 (win-loss) record. Placed second early in the season, the Lakers have slipped down the rank after James and Davis' injury. The Denver Nuggets are ranked fourth, while the Portland Trail Blazers trail behind the Lakers.