Darvin Ham: Lakers Wouldn’t Play Anthony Davis If He Wasn’t Healthy Enough
Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Lakers star Anthony Davis suffered from hip and adductor spasms during the team’s recent road trip, forcing him to miss one game.

Even though he has since been able to return and play in the Lakers’ last five games, he hasn’t quite looked like his usual self on the offensive end of the floor.

Since coming back, Davis has averaged 18.4 points and 11.6 rebounds while shooting 45.2% from the field, which are all lower than his typical averages.

Davis has been able to gut it out and the Lakers have won four of the five games, however. After Friday night’s win over the Portland Trail Blazers, head coach Darvin Ham was asked about Davis’ health and said that he wouldn’t be playing if he wasn’t able to contribute in a positive manner, via Spectrum SportsNet:

“I check in with him all the time. He and I had a great sitdown this morning, checked in with him. I think he got kicked in the shin or something like that. But he tells me he’s great whether he’s feeling all the way 100 or not. He wants to be there for us and our team. So he’s a prideful young man and we appreciate him trying to make himself available at all times. But only he can answer that question. But best believe we wouldn’t send him out there if he wasn’t physically able to carry the load that’s he’s carrying. You look at [his stats] 16 [points], 14 [rebounds] and five blocks, three steals, two assists. He had a solid, solid AD night that we’re accustomed to him having. But as far as my eyes can tell, he’s here for us. He’s gonna be here for us.”

While Davis’ offense has suffered, his defense hasn’t as he is averaging 3.8 blocks per game over that span, including five in the win over Portland. Ham also talked about how important Davis is to the Lakers on that end of the floor:

“Just trying to set a tone. Just the way Bron sets the tone for us offensively whether he’s playing down hill, his 3-ball is working, the way he’s setting up his teammates, AD is doing the same thing on the defensive side of the ball. Being up and able to switch, protecting the basket, active hands, thus the three steals. And just talking and communicating and giving guys confidence that are in front of him to be more aggressive on the ball.”

The Lakers are currently in the unforgiving part of their schedule, playing four games in their last six days with three more upcoming in the next four games.

Even though Davis has been unable to play, it’s been clear that he’s not 100% healthy so that will be something to monitor moving forward, especially given the lack of off days to recover properly.

Davis turns focus to defense amid hip issue

Davis even went as far to admit that the hip issue is affecting him on the offensive side of the floor, saying that he will shift his focus to defense in the meantime until he is back at full strength.

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