Lakers News: Anthony Davis Expects To Be Ready To Play Against Trail Blazers On Sunday Despite Injuring Back In Loss To Clippers
Anthony Davis, Lakers
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers fans held their breath for a moment when Anthony Davis fell to the ground and appeared to have hurt his back early in the third quarter of Thursday’s 103-97 loss to the L.A. Clippers.

Davis came from the weak side to help Patrick Beverley on defense after Kawhi Leonard broke loose from the Lakers guard with a spin at the short corner. Leonard then sent the 29-year-old forward up in the air with a pump fake before attempting a layup. As he started to descend, Davis bumped into the Clippers star’s back, losing control of his body and landing hard on his back.

The eight-time All-Star had struggled with a back issue in the preseason and the fall seems to have re-aggravated the injury. The forward stayed in the game for a couple of minutes, then left to stretch near the tunnel and returned to the court — but he would walk gingerly until the end of the clash.

But Davis explained he only went in the tunnel because of a rule change that doesn’t allow players to stand by the bench. “I just felt like I didn’t want to sit down and let it stiffen up,” he said.

“They have this new rule where you can’t stand by the bench or you get techs, we ended up getting one in Vegas after a dunk or something like that because we were standing in the fans’ way who were sitting courtside.

“So I just went up the tunnel and tried to stay loose until I got called to go back in the game.”

Davis said he should be ready for an early clash with the Portland Trail Blazers on Sunday despite hurting his back again. “I’ll be alright,” he said.

“We got two days between games so whatever I got to do to get it right for Sunday. It’s an early game too so we’ll see how it is but I’m pretty sure I’ll be alright.”

Davis praises Darvin Ham for impact on Lakers

The Lakers play with different zeal under Darvin Ham compared to the 2021-22 season, evidently embracing the new head coach’s system based on tough, gritty defense.

Good results are yet to come as L.A. has started 2022-23 with a 0-2 record. But Davis has praised Ham for the impact he has already had on the team. “I love him and his system,” Davis said.

“He is one of those coaches you would run through a brick wall for. He got your back to make you work hard for him. He’s definitely a player’s coach. He’s been great for all of us. He lets us play freely offensively and keeps a defensive edge.

“We will go back and look at [the loss] and learn. He calls it wins and lessons. There are lessons with our loss.”

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