Update: Anthony Davis and LeBron James will play when the Lakers face the Trail Blazers, but Alex Caruso will not.
Original story follows below.
As of last night, the Lakers’ injury situation made it unclear who would even be available when the team suited up against the Portland Trail Blazers on the second night of their first back-to-back of the season. Today, the full answer is still not entirely clear, but Dave McMenamin of ESPN is reporting that Anthony Davis will be good to go, while the Lakers are still evaluating LeBron James.
No word yet on Alex Caruso, who (like James) is being listed as questionable.
Anthony Davis (right calf) will play Monday against Portland, while LeBron James’ playing status (left ankle) is still to be determined, sources tell ESPN— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) December 28, 2020
Davis missed the Lakers’ blowout victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Sunday night, while James re-aggravated his ankle injury in the win. Last night, James indicated that he felt all right after the game, but wanted to see how he felt this morning before deciding if he would play or not against Portland.
Even if it seems likely James could play if he really needed to, given the short turnaround and that he’s coming off the first night of a back-to-back — as well as the reality that he’s set to turn 36 years old this week — there is really very little reason to play James at all if he’s even the slightest bit limited right now. He’s previously hinted that he’ll be more open to load management this season than he’s been in the past, and if he’s hurting even a tiny bit, the Lakers may as well rest him until at least their next game on Wednesday. He took care of business for Davis while the big man rested on Sunday, so he might as well do what he told President Barack Obama that he’d do this season, and lean on his co-star to return the favor.
The Lakers and Blazers will tip off at 7:00 p.m. PT at Staples Center on Monday night, and we will surely get a full update on James and Caruso’s respective statuses at some point before the game. Stay tuned to Silver Screen and Roll — and our Twitter feed, @LakersSBN — for the latest until then.