Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James has been ruled out for Friday night's game against the Detroit Pistons. According to the team, James is being held out for "load management" connected to his groin injury.
In his first season with the Lakers, James has had the most injury-riddled campaign of his career. He missed 17 games in December and January with the groin injury, and the Lakers have been careful to manage his workload since his return.
"I'm about 80 [percent] right now, but I was good enough to feel confident and push throughout the game," James told reporters following his return February.
"The first quarter was kind of a feel-out, I haven't been out there since December 25th. Second quarter, I kind of ramped it up a little bit more than for the rest of the game. It's going to take a little while to get my rhythm back. I didn't shoot the ball particularly well. I'm very efficient and I take that personal. I was able to help out in other ways and this was a big team win for us.
"I worked my ass off to get back to this point," LeBron continued. "It's the toughest stretch of my career."
When healthy, James has averaged 27.4 points, 8.6 rebounds and 8.0 assists, numbers that have become par for the course for his career.
Unfortunately for the Lakers, this is another game he'll sit out as the Lakers stare up at a crowded Western Conference playoff race.