KEY POINTS

  • NBA pundit predicts the Lakers will come up short in a back-to-back title bid without Anthony Davis
  • Lakers head coach is taking a cautious approach on Davis' road to recovery
  • LeBron James is carrying the load for the Lakers as Davis continues to sit on the sidelines

The Los Angeles Lakers were considered favorites when the 2020-21 NBA season started although this may have not factored in having its main stars healthy for the long haul.

Most know that Anthony Davis continues to sit out due to a calf and ACL injury and his continued absence may hurt the Purple and Gold’s back-to-back title aspirations.

Pundits have weighed in on possibly seeing Anthony Davis missing more games for the Lakers. Los Angeles has been trying to keep its head above water, but LeBron James has been the only notable player trying to carry the team on his shoulders.

Fox Sports analyst Nick Wright is the latest to touch on the matter, believing that the Lakers cannot win the title if Davis remains indisposed.

The pundit sees the Lakers still making the NBA Finals, but it will be a different story when they tangle with their Eastern Conference counterparts. Wright gave his insights on “First Thing’s First.

“The Lakers can't win the title without Anthony Davis. I do think they can win the West without AD — they could beat the Suns, Clippers and Jazz. But AD is going to be there," Wright explained.

Given that the four-time NBA champion is already at 36, the last thing that head coach Frank Vogel wants to see is James getting injured.

This is a conundrum that Los Angeles needs to consider, a reason why they have resorted to tactics and take some load off “The King.” Much of this was covered in a previous post.

If all stays accordingly, the return of Davis is supposed to happen in a couple of weeks. However, the Lakers are still expected to continue monitoring his status, aware that things could get worse if they are not careful.

No less than Davis himself is aware that if he returns prematurely could also affect his basketball career. A lot of NBA players saw their stock dip by doing so, particularly the ones who dealt with an ACL injury.

“You always want to make sure that you’re going out there fully healthy. This isn’t the first time that I’ve aggravated this. This is the second time,” the 27-year-old big man stated.

LeBron James Anthony Davis Lakers LeBron James #23 and Anthony Davis #3 of the Los Angeles Lakers celebrate during the game against the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center on February 12, 2021 in Los Angeles, California. Photo: Meg Oliphant/Getty Images