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LeBron James downplays injury concerns after Pistons scare, insists he will play against Kings

After looking slightly hobbled and in discomfort at the end of Sunday’s game, LeBron James downplayed any concerns and was adamant he will play in the team’s next game on Tuesday.

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NBA: Detroit Pistons at Los Angeles Lakers Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Life is never easy with the Los Angeles Lakers.

Even on a night where they won with relative ease aside from a late run from Detroit to win 110-106, LeBron James left fans worried after seemingly re-aggravating his ab strain injury late in the team’s win.

A layup from James with 4:50 left in the game seemed innocuous enough but a contest from Trey Lyles at the rim was enough to leave James grabbing his side the rest of the night. After an and-one layup from James at the 3:55 mark, he was seen grabbing his side, which he did multiple more times the rest of the game.

After the game in his walk-off interview with Spectrum Sportsnet, James spoke about the injury and noted that he’s still working through the pain, which comes back every now and then but didn’t linger long on Sunday.

In his postgame presser, James was even briefer in his response and even more adamant that he would be available on Tuesday when the team travels to Sacramento.

“I’m alright. I’ll be ready to go on Tuesday,” James said.

James was still listed as questionable with his ab strain heading into Sunday’s game and it’s unlikely that will change, particularly with his re-aggravation on Sunday.

Various injuries and a suspension has limited how much James has been available this season, which has hindered the ability for the team’s Big Three of James, Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook to build chemistry together. Despite being 22 games into the season, the trio has played just 195 minutes together across 10 games, including Sunday’s contest.

The results have been mixed with a predictable rough start giving way to more successful outings in recent weeks. On Sunday, for example, the trio had likely their best game together of the year, finishing with a net rating of +29.5 in 20 minutes.

It’s important, then, for the Lakers and the Big Three to continue building off the strong performance and building that chemistry as the games tick by. Sunday marks just past the quarter mark of the season and with the Lakers being behind the eight ball due to injuries, each game they don’t play together feels even more like a lost opportunity.

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