Anyone even passably familiar with how groin injuries work was probably at least a little surprised when the news came down on Thursday night: Anthony Davis had been medically cleared to return to the starting lineup for Game 6 of Lakers vs. Suns, just days after suffering a Grade 1 groin strain.
Davis looked limited even in layup lines, and he didn’t last long against Phoenix. After just five minutes of playing time in which he looked like he could barely move, Davis appeared to re-aggravate his groin injury while attempting to defend Devin Booker on a drive to the basket. He immediately limped back to the locker room after struggling to get off the floor.
AD heads back to the locker room after going down. pic.twitter.com/ExlDNMHgcv— Spectrum SportsNet (@SpectrumSN) June 4, 2021
He later re-joined his teammates on the bench in the second quarter, and while the Lakers officially listed him as “questionable” to return initially, they had ruled him out for the rest of the evening at halftime. In a small piece of good news, there are multiple reports that Davis has not made his injury worse, just that it ended up being too severe to play on:
Source: Los Angeles Lakers star Anthony Davis (groin) did not injure his groin strain any further, but the pain intensifies when his mobility is tested.— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) June 4, 2021
Anthony Davis' night is officially over, per the Lakers. AD did not do anything in the first quarter to make his left groin strain more severe than it already wasy, sources tell ESPN. It was the "same feeling" as it was going into the game, sources said. He just wasn't right.— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) June 4, 2021
Davis showed a ton of heart by attempting to play while looking that limited, but it’s hard not feel like someone with the Lakers should have tried harder to stop him after watching him tonight. Hoping that he did actually avoid making this injury significantly worse is about the most optimistic one can be right now.
All in all, this was just a horrible and deflating end to a truly cursed season. Get well soon, AD.
This story will be updated with more information as it continues to develop.