The Los Angeles Lakers have been struggling in recent weeks, waiting for some reinforcements to come back like Anthony Davis, Lonnie Walker IV and Austin Reaves.
Davis, in particular, has been a massive loss as the big man was playing at an MVP level before going doing with a stress reaction in his foot.
The injury didn’t require surgery, but Davis has still had to be careful in his rehab process to avoid it becoming a bigger, long-term issue.
All reports that have come out regarding Davis have been positive as he has slowly but surely been making progress toward a return. It appears he is reaching the final steps in his rehab as according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, there is optimism that Davis could return as soon as next week:
ESPN Sources: Los Angeles Lakers All-Star Anthony Davis continues to make pain-free progress on his right foot and there’s optimism of a return to the lineup as soon as late next week. The Lakers start a five-game trip on January 28 against Boston.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 20, 2023
This is obviously great news as despite being 20-25, the Lakers are still in the postseason mix if they make a run once Davis and others return from injury. This would also allow the front office to assess the team with Davis for a few games before the Feb. 9 trade deadline approaches.
Darvin Ham gave a similar update on Davis’ status this past Wednesday, saying that he has been pain-free in his workout sessions.
“With AD, he’s coming along as planned,” Ham said. “He’s getting more and more on-court work, doing 30, 45-minute, almost an hour workouts. Us having him go through those workouts, and they are intense, just to see how the foot reacts to those workouts. Lately, he’s been pretty much pain-free so once that continues for a little bit more time then we’ll see where he’s at and when he can be re-inserted into the lineup.”
The Lakers have four games over the next week, three of them at home, before starting a five-game road trip in Boston against the Celtics on Saturday, Jan. 28. It seems that Davis is targeting that game for a return barring any setbacks.
Darvin Ham says Lakers need to be smart about not rushing Anthony Davis back
Even though Davis is getting closer to a return though, the Lakers will not hesitate to slow his rehab down if he is feeling any pain and in danger of re-injuring his foot.
“You have to be smart about it,” Ham said. “And there’s times where we definitely have to save a player from themselves and again, you have to be careful because feeling good after an individual workout, it’ll be a little different when you’ve got extra bodies on the floor and you’re banging, changing speeds, changing directions.
“So we want to make sure, and our medial staff has done a tremendous job in that department, and all of us have communicated and everybody understands that as impatient as AD is, and it’s rightfully so because of the way he played and the way he wanted to attack the season even before the season started. So it’s understandable that he’s in that mindset but all the while we have to be careful because we don’t want a reoccurring theme as far as him being in and out because we didn’t manage this process the right way.”
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