Davis was struck in the head late in Game 5 and exited in a wheelchair. There were concerns that Davis suffered a concussion but that is not the case and the Lakers’ star big man is not in the concussion protocol, per head coach Darvin Ham. Davis is listed as probable to play on Friday.
“We checked in with him. He’s feeling great. Our medical staff gave us a great update. He’s not in the protocol. Not showing any signs of anything. He’ll be listed as probable tomorrow,” Ham said on Thursday. “That was great, great news.”
Anthony Davis’ Absence Would Have Been Massive Hit for Lakers
Davis has had a few inconsistent performances in the postseason but has been huge for the Lakers against the Warriors. He is averaging 22.4 points on 58.1% shooting, 13.4 rebounds, 3.4 assists, 2.2 blocks and 1.4 steals in the series.
“It’s huge,” Ham said. “He’s the centerpiece of what we’re trying to do on both sides of the ball and for us just in general for our success rate.”
Not having Davis available would have been a massive hit to the Lakers on both ends of the court. Davis has provided a huge presence on defense and even stuck like glue to Warriors star Stephen Curry at the end of Game 4.
“Man, he’s the best defensive player in the league,” LeBron James said after the Game 4 win that put the Lakers up 3-1 in the series. “I mean, you know. I think the league knows it as well. Not many guys that can protect the rim at all costs and also switch out on point guards, switch out on guys like Steph. Steph is a hell of a player, had a hell of a game. I think he even had a triple-double. But we trust AD guarding anybody in this league and he showed that.”
Warriors’ Goal is to Wear Out Anthony Davis, LeBron James
The Warriors kept their season alive with a 121-106 victory in Game 5. Head coach Steve Kerr feels like the key for the Warriors is wearing out Davis and James.
“We want to push their guys,” Kerr told Tim Kawakami of The Athletic. “I’m sure they feel the same way. Last game they were putting Steph in all those pick-and-rolls, so they’re trying to wear Steph out. We’re trying to wear out Davis and LeBron. Long series. So it is a little bit of a battle of attrition, and we’ve just gotta keep pushing the tempo.”
The Lakers get to head back home for Game 6, where they have not lost this postseason.
The two squads have been in a war of words over officiating. The Lakers hold a hefty edge in free throw attempts in the series but they shot just 15 during Game 5 — equal to the Warriors. That came after a rant from Kerr about the calls the LA was getting and some potential flopping, which the Lakers took issue with.
“We don’t teach flopping. We teach our players to play downhill and attack the paint and be forceful,” Ham said.