Just a day after a report that LeBron James is “doing everything he can” to get back on the court from his current bout with a foot tendon injury as soon as possible for the Lakers, head coach Darvin Ham provided an update on his star on Sunday that — while admittedly nonspecific — at the very least wasn’t negative.
Speaking ahead of James’ seventh consecutive missed game, Ham told reporters that the superstar is going to be back on the bench with the team after a brief break, and made it sound like there have not been setbacks in his rehab so far.
LeBron James is back with the team for the Lakers' game against the Knicks, after about a week away. Lakers coach Darvin Ham said it "was good for him to unplug a little bit." As for the progress of James' right foot injury, Ham said: "Everything is going according to plan."— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) March 13, 2023
James is in the second week of a rest period that the team initially said would last three weeks before he is reevaluated on approximately March 23, so this update could be a whole lot of nothing. However, it is worth noting that James was not wearing the walking boot pictured in the photo above this article for the team’s game against the Knicks, according to the Spectrum SportsNet broadcast, which to this non-doctor would at minimum appear to be progress in the right direction.
But progress or not, the Lakers still have a ways to go before they can hope for even the earliest possible return from James, with five more games after Sunday before that reevaluation date. And as we have noted a few times here, the date a player is reevaluated is rarely the day they return, as there is usually a ramp-up process before they can get back on the court. The rest of us — and the team — will just have to be patient and hope for more wins to help the Lakers continue to climb up the Western Conference standings between now and whenever that happens.
You can follow Harrison on Twitter at @hmfaigen.