Before the Lakers took on the Golden State Warriors on Sunday night, Anthony Davis could be seen out on the floor, going through some shooting drills in full view of the assembled media. But while his Achilles and calf at least feeling well enough for a bit of practice work has to be a good sign, head coach Frank Vogel said Sunday night that it wasn’t a reason to assume Davis would return earlier than expected.
“It’s just light shooting. We’re still on track for the four-week plan,” Vogel said.
Anthony Davis doing some very light on-court work pregame pic.twitter.com/iYN2Rv54X4— Dan Woike (@DanWoikeSports) March 1, 2021
The four-week plan Vogel references is one the team has called an estimate, and not an exact timeline. Davis himself told Silver Screen and Roll last week that it’s been hard to stick with it — and especially so while the team was losing four games in a row — but that the medical staff has convinced him of the importance of patience.
“Even though it’s hard to sit out and watch the team struggle and you want to get back on the floor and play, that’s why you have the medical staff and your team around you: To protect you from yourself. You always want to make sure that you’re going out there fully healthy. This isn’t the first time that I’ve aggravated this. This is the second time,” Davis said. “And it’s an Achilles, so you want to be smart with it. So even though I feel ready to get back on the floor, you’ve got those guys around you to say ‘not yet. Let’s do a little bit more rehab and make sure it’s 100% healed before we go out there.’”
So while all of that is reason to expect that four weeks from when he was first held out may not be an exact return date, it’s still worth mentioning that if that timeline was correct, Davis would miss at least the Lakers’ first three games following the All-Star break. If he can come back for that fourth game against the Charlotte Hornets, that would be a boon for a team that has missed its anchor in the middle. But if he can’t, it will be because the team is being cautious. At least it’s a good sign that he appears to be on the right path so far.