Lakers list 6 players on injury report ahead of Game 1 vs. Nuggets

Mike Battaglino
3 Min Read
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

LeBron James (left ankle peroneal tendinopathy) and Anthony Davis (low back soreness) are listed as probable heading into the Los Angeles Lakers’ opening game in the 2024 NBA Playoffs against the defending champion Denver Nuggets on Saturday.

The two superstars are among six Lakers on the injury report, with the other four — Jalen Hood-Schifino (lumbar disc surgery), Cam Reddish (right ankle sprain), Jarred Vanderbilt (right midfoot sprain) and Christian Wood (left knee surgery) — classified as out.

James is dealing with an ankle condition that has landed him on the injury report throughout the season. He has been able to play through it and has the Lakers looking to make another long playoff run, starting with a rematch against the team that swept them out of the 2023 Western Conference Finals on the way to the title last season.

Earlier this week, the 39-year-old made some optimistic comments about his health heading into the postseason.

The 31-year-old Davis left the regular season finale with back spasms and accused New Orleans Pelicans forward Larry Nance Jr. of a dangerous play that led to the injury.

It did not prevent the big man from scoring 20 points and grabbing 15 rebounds in the play-in game against the Pelicans on Tuesday. The 110-106 victory gave the Lakers the No. 7 seed in the Western Conference, setting up the playoff rematch against the No. 2 seed Nuggets.

Davis expressed confidence that the Lakers are ready for this tough first-round series, saying, “We’re not ducking the smoke.”

James also dealt with whatever discomfort he may have been feeling to come close to a triple-double against New Orleans, with 23 points, nine assists and nine rebounds.

In addition, members of the Lakers front office praised the performance of Gabe Vincent in the play-in game. The guard was sidelined most of the season by injury but was able to play in five games in April to get ready for the postseason. He could be a key player in the series against the Nuggets as he brings a wealth of playoff experience gained with the Miami Heat, including in the 2023 NBA Finals against the Nuggets.

The series opens at Ball Arena in Denver, with Game 2 there on Monday.

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Mike is a veteran journalist who has covered the NBA for almost three decades. He remembers the birth of "Showtime" and has always admired the star power the Lakers have brought to the game.