— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) October 14, 2022
Davis, who played in the Lakers’ preseason loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday, has dealt with back soreness throughout the preseason.
However, Lakers head coach Darvin Ham said earlier this month that there was nothing “structurally wrong” with Davis’ back.
Regarding Anthony Davis, who was on the injury report with low back soreness, Darvin Ham said there isn’t anything “structurally wrong,” but just “a little tightness” for Davis, which is why he’s going to start tonight.
— Mike Trudell (@LakersReporter) October 4, 2022
It makes sense that the Lakers want to rest Davis ahead of the start of the 2022-23 regular season, as they need him healthy for when the games matter.
Last season, Davis appeared in just 40 games due to various injuries. He played well when he was on the floor, averaging 23.2 points, 9.9 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game while shooting 53.2 percent from the field.
The Lakers missed the playoffs in the 2021-22 season with Davis and LeBron James both missing time due to injury. The team is hoping to keep its stars healthy for the upcoming season in order to make a playoff run.
Los Angeles opens up its regular season on Tuesday, Oct. 18 against the Golden State Warriors. Golden State won the NBA title last season, so that game will be a great test for the Lakers to see where they stand early in the season.
The Lakers have several options that they can turn to in place of Davis for Friday’s game. Wenyen Gabriel, Thomas Bryant and Damian Jones all could see extended minutes on Friday.
Bryant and Jones were both offseason signings by the Lakers while Gabriel showed some nice potential at the end of the 2021-22 season.
Davis could play some minutes at center for the Lakers in the upcoming campaign, as Ham has not ruled out starting him there at the start of the regular season.
Darvin Ham says Anthony Davis starting at the 5 to begin the regular season for the Lakers is “on the table” and under “heavy consideration.”
— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) October 10, 2022
Friday’s game against the Kings is the Lakers’ final tune-up before the regular season. The Lakers and Kings are scheduled to tip off at 7 p.m. PST on Friday night.