Los Angeles Lakers star big man Anthony Davis has been out of the lineup since December 16 after suffering a stress injury in his right foot against the Denver Nuggets. However, the All-Star could be returning to the court soon.
Dave McMenamin of ESPN said on the January 19 episode of “That’s OD” with Ohm Youngmisuk that Davis could play as soon as next week.
“Anthony Davis is, as we speak right now, potentially a week away from returning,” McMenamin said. “He’s going to continue the ramp-up process, go through a couple full-fledge practices full court and it’ll be all about how his body responds the next day. But if he has everything continue to go the right way, he will be back playing for the Lakers next week at Crypto.com Arena and be with them for that entire road trip.”
Davis, 29, has appeared in 25 games this season for the Lakers, who are 20-25. The Chicago native is averaging 27.4 points, 12.1 rebounds and 2.6 assists while shooting 59.3% from the field, 29.0% from beyond the arc and 82.6% from the free-throw line. The Lakers are 11-14 with Davis in the lineup.
Davis hasn’t been able to stay healthy since helping the Lakers win the 2020 championship over the Miami Heat at the Walt Disney World bubble in six games. The Kentucky product played only 36 games in 2020-21 and 40 games last season.
Davis, who has the same agent as LeBron James, signed a five-year, $190 million contract with the Lakers in December 2020. The deal includes an early termination option in 2024 and will be fully up in 2025.
The Lakers Have Struggled Without Anthony Davis
As expected, the Lakers have struggled without Davis. They have gone 8-9 without the Brow, who is 12th in the league in points per game, second in rebounds per game, fifth in blocks per game and second in player efficiency rating.
Davis has 18 double-doubles on the season. The future Hall of Famer, who didn’t require surgery on his foot, has a plus-minus of +48. Shams Charania of The Athletic reported on January 17 that Davis is aiming to return to the Lakers’ lineup before the All-Star break.
“Lakers star Anthony Davis is aiming to return to the lineup by early February, within a handful of games before the All-Star break, league sources say. Davis has been sidelined since Dec. 16 due to a stress reaction and bone spur injury in his right foot,” Charania reported. “Davis had played like an MVP candidate prior to the injury, with season averages of 27.4 points, 12.1 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 2.1 blocks and a career-high 59.4 percent field goal shooting.”
Will the Lakers Make a Trade After Anthony Davis Comes Back?
The NBA trade deadline is February 9. James wants the Lakers front office to trade the team’s first-round picks in 2027 and 2029 this season to upgrade the roster, league sources told Heavy Sports. However, the purple and gold are unlikely to listen to James.
“You’ve got a lot of the organization saying, ‘We should trade picks and win now,’ but some in the organization are saying, ‘Do not sell out the future,'” an NBA executive told Heavy Sports senior insider Sean Deveney. “And [Lakers governor] Jeanie Buss is with the second group, and that is what matters most.”
The Lakers are 83-44 since 2019-20 when James and Davis play. They could possibly make a run once Davis comes back from his injury. However, given Davis’ injury history, it’s not guaranteed he will stay healthy for the rest of the season.