LOS ANGELES — Lakers star big man Anthony Davis will return to the lineup on Wednesday against the visiting San Antonio Spurs, barring any setback during his pregame warmup, league sources told ESPN.
Davis will be on a 20- to 24-minute restriction, easing back from a foot injury that had some medical personnel projecting an eight- to 10-week recovery time frame, sources said. It was 5½ weeks ago that he suffered a fractured bone spur and stress reaction in his right foot.
The Lakers have gone 10-10 in Davis’ absence, after falling to the LA Clippers 133-115 on Tuesday.
“I didn’t expect anything besides just go out and compete,” LeBron James said after the Clippers game when asked about how the Lakers fared without Davis. “It wasn’t like, ‘OK, AD’s out, what can we do?’ You just go out and play the game and see what happens.”
Davis averaged 27.4 points this season prior to the injury, while also posting career bests in rebounds (12.1 per game) and field goal percentage (59.4%), along with averaging 2.1 blocks.
Lakers coach Darvin Ham pulled his main rotation players with 5:07 remaining in the fourth quarter on Tuesday, essentially conceding the loss with his team trailing 121-103.
It could have been an anticipatory move to save their legacy to join Davis in Wednesday’s lineup against the Spurs.
“I made an executive decision to pull the plug,” Ham explained. “Knowing we have a game to play tomorrow, we have to give ourselves the best possible chance to win.”
Rui Hachimura, acquired in a trade on Monday, also will be available to play against the Spurs, according to Ham.