Report: Lakers' LeBron James Expected to Miss Next 2 Games to Rest Ankle Injury

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistMay 4, 2021

Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James dribbles during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Sacramento Kings Friday, April 30, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press

Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James will miss the team's next two games to rest his right ankle, according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.

Los Angeles plays the Los Angeles Clippers on Thursday and has a road matchup with the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday.

Wojnarowski added it's possible James could miss additional games beyond Friday. James and the Lakers will monitor the injury and plan to take the cautious approach as the postseason nears, per Wojnarowski.

Largely because James and Anthony Davis have missed significant time with injuries, the Lakers are in a dog fight to avoid slipping into the NBA's play-in tournament for the playoffs. At 37-28, the reigning champions are fifth in the Western Conference but sit just one game ahead of the seventh-place Blazers.

Despite being without Davis, Los Angeles was in second place before James suffered a high ankle sprain in a 99-94 loss to the Atlanta Hawks on March 20. The four-time MVP was out for 20 games, and the Lakers slipped down the standings.

James was back for two games before the ankle became a problem again.

General manager Rob Pelinka surrounded James and Davis with a strong supporting cast, retaining many of the key players from last year's squad and addressing the notable departures.

Los Angeles' hopes of a title repeat, however, appear to rest squarely on James' return.