Los Angeles Lakers All-Star Anthony Davis is currently in the early stages of recovering from a right calf strain that is expected to sideline him for at least four weeks.
Davis re-aggravated a lingering Achilles injury along with the calf strain in a loss to the Denver Nuggets on Valentine’s Day. Since then the Lakers have posted a 1-4 record, with their lone win coming against the Minnesota Timberwolves, the worst team in the Western Conference.
Even that victory posed significant issues for L.A., as Minnesota took them deep into the fourth quarter before Los Angeles eventually prevailed.
All eyes are focused on Davis’ eventual return date, but with the current timetable, that won’t come for at least two more weeks. As it stands, the nine-year veteran is largely limited to conditioning drills and workouts.
“I don’t know the exact details, but he’s not allowed to run around the court obviously,” Lakes head coach Frank Vogel said. “So it’s really just about strengthening the leg around the calf, and he’s able to lift upper body. I think that’s his focal point right now.”
Davis’ health remains the top priority for the Lakers. Even with their current three-game losing skid, L.A. still controls their own destiny, so rushing Davis back for the sake of accumulating a few regular-season wins would be imprudent.
Though they have struggled to replace Davis’ 22.5 points per game through other role players, Dennis Schroder could return for the game against the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday.
Schroder’s speed and ability to burst past defenders into the paint will relieve a weighty burden off the shoulders of LeBron James, who hasn’t received the help necessary to extract wins against some tough opponents.
Having Schroder and James on the court together could do wonders for the role players, as players like Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Alex Caruso and Wesley Matthews will benefit from the gravity Schroder and James pull.
Davis plans to be ‘smarter’ with rehab
After Davis limped off the floor in Denver, questions emerged if Los Angeles didn’t take his Achilles injury seriously the first time around. Davis dismissed some of those concerns but said his approach will be more diligent this time around.
“Up the treatment more; instead of three times a day, maybe five times a day,” Davis said before the MRI confirmed a calf strain. “Just try to get it back where it needs to be so I can go out there and help the team.”
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