The Lakers have gotten off to a rocky start this season. A 3-10 record is bad enough for this Los Angeles team, but now they have to deal with LeBron James being out of the lineup. The superstar had already been dealing with soreness in his left foot when he went for a turnaround jumper in last Wednesday’s game and came down grimacing. He was holding his inner thigh and hobbled back to the locker room.
There wasn’t much concern at first, but the team quickly ruled James out of last Friday’s game after further testing and he was ruled out again for Sunday’s matchup. Luckily, the Lakers don’t play again until this Friday against the Pistons, so there is some optimism that he could make a return. James has participated in the non-contact portions of practice this week and the Lakers have indicated that his availability on Friday will be a true game-time decision.
Even a soft tissue adductor (groin) strain requires at least a week of rest to fully heal. If the strain is closer to a grade 1, the recovery time jumps to 2-4 weeks. The Lakers have indicated that they plan to be conservative with James’ recovery, so while it is possible he returns at the end of the week, we are not convinced that is the route the Lakers are going to take. The good news about James getting rest is that it will also give him time to fully recover from the soreness he was experiencing in his left foot. The Lakers will need James at peak health to bring them out of this rut.