The New York Knicks are rolling along as the 2020-21 NBA season heads toward a close. The Knicks sit at 38-30 and they are the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference.
The team is coming off one of their most impressive victories of the season on Sunday after a 106-100 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers. As winners of 4 out of their last 6 games, the Knicks are looking more and more like a team that opponents do not want to see come playoff time with their exhausting style of play. Knicks’ All-Star Julius Randle and company have one of their biggest tests of the season coming up on Tuesday.
LeBron Could Return vs. Knicks on Tuesday
The next team on the New York Knicks schedule is the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday. Reigning NBA Finals Most Valuable Player LeBron James who has been away from the team since May 6 is aiming to return on Tuesday when his team faces the Knicks at home at the Staples Center.
On Monday ESPN senior writer Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the likeliness of James playing in Tuesday’s matchup with the Knicks is extremely high.
“Much more optimism on the state of LeBron James’ right ankle after on-court work Sunday and Monday, sources tell ESPN,” Woj tweeted on Monday. “James was pain-free after several days off – and able to make hard cuts and elevate. Return on Tuesday vs. Knicks is likely.”
LeBron Says He Will Never Be the Same Player Again
LeBron was a full participant in the team’s practice on Monday. Lakers’ head coach Frank Vogel spoke on the progress that James has made so far in his recovery.
“We did some drill work. We did some contrived scrimmages, and we did a short, full scrimmage,” Vogel told reporters on Monday via ESPN. “And he did all of it.”
James who has been a noted iron man for much of his NBA career, suffered an ankle injury earlier this season that would cause him to miss six weeks, the longest layoff of his career. James admits that because of the severity of the injury it is likely that we have seen the last days of a fully healthy LeBron.
“Getting back to 100 percent is impossible,” James said per Ryan Ward of Lakers Nation. “I don’t think I’ll get back to 100 percent in my career.”
Lakers Currently Fighting for a Playoff Spot
The Los Angeles Lakers could also be without their forward Kyle Kuzma who is dealing with what the team is calling back tightness which caused him to miss the team’s last game against the Phoenix Suns. The injury bug has bitten the Lakers at a very inopportune time as they are in the middle of a fight for a playoff spot.
The Knicks are likely to get a very game version of the Lakers on Tuesday. Los Angeles currently has a record of 38-30 which is the same record that the Knicks have. The difference is that the Knicks are the 4th seed in the East while the Lakers will likely have to participate in the play-in tournament next week in hopes of securing a playoff spot.