Lakers Reveal LeBron James Injury Update Before Bucks Matchup

LeBron James, Los Angeles Lakers, Washington Wizards, NBA News
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers are facing a critical phase as the NBA season draws to a close, with their record at 34-30 ahead of Friday night’s game against the Milwaukee Bucks.

The Lakers’ situation is further complicated by LeBron James‘ ankle issues. He had to leave the Lakers’ last game against the Sacramento Kings in the fourth quarter, limping off to the locker room, casting doubt on his availability for the Bucks game.

The atmosphere at Arena was tense as James headed to the locker room, highlighting his importance to the Lakers’ postseason ambitions. Currently, the Lakers are the 10th seed in the Western Conference, leaving them little room for mistakes.

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: LeBron James, Los Angeles Lakers, Milwaukee Bucks Updates

Beating the Bucks would be a crucial momentum boost, but James went from being listed as questionable on the injury report due to left ankle peroneal tendinopathy, to being ruled out hours before the game.

With James sidelined, the Lakers will rely more on Anthony Davis, Austin Reaves, and D’Angelo Russell for offense. Taurean Prince is expected to take James’ place in the starting lineup, and Spencer Dinwiddie will likely see an increase in minutes from the bench.

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: LeBron James, Los Angeles Lakers, Milwaukee Bucks Updates

James, at 39 years old, has played in 56 games this season, continuing to impress with averages of 25.3 points, 8.0 assists, and 7.1 rebounds per game. He’s shooting 52.8 percent from the field and 40.5 percent from three-point range.

The Bucks have been enhancing their defensive play and showing more intensity lately. Without James, the Lakers will have a tough time scoring. For the Lakers to maintain competitiveness in the season’s crucial last stretch, they need James healthy and on the floor.

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