Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James slipped last night while trying to retrieve a mishandled dribble, and his left leg awkwardly rotated outwards. LeBron immediately grabbed at his left groin area.
After the next stoppage in play, James could be seen mouthing to head trainer Marco Nunez that he “felt a pop” and all Lakers fans collectively held their breath as he walked to the bench to test the area out. That testing elicited more pain, and James had no choice but to exit stage left, back to the visitors’ locker room with what the team termed a “groin strain.”
Even after a resounding victory against the defending champion Golden State Warriors that highlighted the team’s resiliency and the leadership of Rajon Rondo, all thoughts were with LeBron and the severity of his groin strain.
Early reports out of the locker room after manual testing were that he had a “mild injury,” and those reports were confirmed by an MRI this morning.
The MRI showed no significant damage and James has been listed as “day to day”. To give more detail on his injury, I made the following video that details what a “groin strain” is, the typical return to play timeline and any chances for re-injury when James comes back.
All in all, the injury could have been much worse, and although I expect James to miss the next two or three games, his overall prognosis is excellent. One of the main reasons LeBron puts in work around the clock is to build resiliency to any setbacks and come back even stronger. We’ll see how much that pays off here.
Dr. Rajpal Brar has a doctorate in physical therapy from Northern Arizona University, and runs his own sports medicine and performance business, 3CB Performance, in West LA and Valencia, CA. He also works at a hospital — giving him experience with patients in the immediate healthcare setting and neurological patients (post stroke, post brain injury) — and has been practicing for 1.5 years. Brar is additionally training at UCLA’s mindful awareness research center (MARC), and analyzes the Lakers from a medical perspective for Silver Screen and Roll.