Anthony Davis made his return for the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday after missing the last two games with Achilles tendinosis and he looked like he had fresh legs. In nearly 35 minutes of playing time against the Memphis Grizzlies, Davis scored a team-high 35 points on 16-27 shooting from the field and came up a rebound shy of a double-double — not bad for his first game back.
However, after the game, Davis revealed that he played through some discomfort, particularly toward the end of night.
“It felt great going into the game.” Davis said after the Lakers’ 115-105 win. “But as you play, you’re always using that Achilles tendon, and it got sore towards the end just because I was constantly moving on it. But it felt great coming into the game, felt great throughout the game, but late game it kind of was bothering me a little bit. I felt like we had the game in hand, and coach felt that way, so I was able to sit down the last two and a half [minutes].
“It felt great, I’ll get some treatment on it tomorrow and get ready for Denver.”
The idea of Davis playing through an Achilles injury seems scary because of how devastating Achilles injuries can be, but Davis clarified that it’s not his Achilles tendon that he’s been experiencing soreness in — it’s the area around it.
“It could go away obviously with rest and stuff like that,” Davis said. “But I’m not trying to rest up. I’m just trying to keep it as loose as possible... It’s not the actual Achilles tendon where you guys are thinking about, where it can be scary. It’s — I forgot the name of it — something that’s over it that’s pretty sore, so it’s not the actual tendon, which is why it’s comfortable me to play and get it loose, and why the doctors and training staff are comfortable enough to let me go out there and perform as well.
“It’s just something that’s going to continually get better. I’m constantly doing treatment on it throughout the day, throughout the night, and wearing stuff in my shoes to help with the pain level, and wearing tape and all of these things to make it feel better throughout the course of time. And it’s actually been very good. I’m just able to go out there and play and not worry about it.”
Davis has missed four games this season, but if the training staff signed off on Davis returning to play, then there’s probably nothing to worry about. Still, his injury is something that will be worth keeping a close eye on for the remainder of the season, especially if it doesn’t get better with rest.