For the second consecutive season, the Los Angeles Lakers have to try and fight their way to the playoffs without the help of Anthony Davis.
Davis has missed extended time due to a foot sprain he suffered against the Utah Jazz, and the Lakers have predictably struggled on both ends of the floor without him. While LeBron James has picked up the slack and even replaced him at center for certain games, Los Angeles desperately needs their star big man to return to the court sooner rather than later.
The 29-year-old has been progressing through rehab and head coach Frank Vogel said he is set to take the next step in his ramp-up.
“In terms of what his plan is, he’s gonna begin on-court work tomorrow with spot shooting and we’ll see how that goes in terms of ramping up activity and we’ll just have to see how it’s responding,” Vogel said before Sunday’s game against the Phoenix Suns.
Davis himself detailed what kind of cardio he has been doing but sounded unsure what the shooting will entail, via Matthew Barrero of NBA.com:
“As far as the shooting, I’m not too sure if I’ll be able to do some movement. I’m pretty sure I’ll be able to jump a little bit. The doctor has to talk with trainers to see exactly what I can do. In terms of cardio, there wasn’t too much I could do but I have been doing little interval circuits with high intensity weight training. So, like grabbing some dumbbells and we were going super-fast to get the cardio going. I was doing some battle ropes.
“But getting cleared to shoot, I don’t know if I’ll be cleared to jog a little bit now where I can get on the treadmill. I’ve been wearing a heart rate monitor to get my heart rate up. I’ve never really gotten out of shape. Even with my knee, I still feel I came back just fine.”
All Lakers fans can do now is hope and pray that Davis’ ramp-up goes well and is able to return with little issue. However, the question remains whether or not he will be able to make it back in time for the end of the regular season.
Frank Vogel unsure if Anthony Davis will return during 2021-22 season
Foot injuries for big men are always cause for concern, especially for someone like Davis who has dealt with various lower-body ailments. While Davis is optimistic he can return, Vogel did not sound as sure.
“100% maybe [laughs]. We’ll see. He’s got to test it and he’s got to increase his workload and see how the injury responds. We don’t have anything further than that.”
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