Los Angeles Lakers’ Decision To Play LeBron James and Anthony Davis Less During The Preseason

(Image via Wikipedia)

(Image via Wikipedia)

Paige Everson, Writer

It is the first of four preseason games on the schedule for the Los Angeles Lakers, the most the NBA allows, and with those games, coach Frank Vogel sounds like he is calling off the big guns. 

With the Los Angeles Lakers have played their first preseason game on Dec/11 against the LA Clippers, Vogel said on Dec/8 when asked about LeBron James and Anthony Davis, “We haven’t made that decision yet, but I will say it is probably unlikely that they play”. Vogel has hinted James and Davis will play limited minutes during the preseason.

The Lakers will play the Clippers again in an exhibition game Sunday and then go on the road for multiple games against the Phoenix Suns on Dec/16 and Dec/18. Then the regular season starts Dec/22 at home against the Dallas Mavericks.

The Lakers are facing a turnaround of only 71 days between Game 6 of the NBA Finals and their season opener on Dec. 22. That represents the shortest offseason in NBA history.

Before the Lakers get to the games and worry about an opponent, they are being mindful of guarding against COVID-19. They won the title in the Orlando, Florida bubble, where not one player, coach, or staff member tested positive for the coronavirus in the 96 days. 

This season is going to be different.

“It is going to be a lot tougher, to be honest,” Davis said. “The bubble, you knew you were safe. Here, you don’t know. I mean, the league has sent all these guidelines about not going to bars and restaurants and clubs and all this stuff to try to make it safe for us. But, we got to hold each other accountable.”

Davis said the team had a lengthy conversation about what everyone should be doing to stay safe.

As a veteran group, many of the players on the Laker roster have families at home and will have to manage their households to not only keep their loved ones safe but not put the team at risk. “It is going to be a lot of pressure because we did get the memos, and one of the things that were on there was if your kids have games during this time, we can not attend it,” Kentavious Caldwell-Pope said. “That is going to be hard for guys that like supporting their kids in basketball, and anything else that they do outside of their home.”

The continuation of this team towards getting COVID-19 under control continues to improve. But will that help the fact that the Lakers celebrated their 17th win on the streets with fans? Yahoo Sports wrote, “even though they were asked not to because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Lakers fans celebrated accordingly in Los Angeles.” What this shows is that The Lakers are not helping much to stop the spread of the pandemic. 

With that said, what will we expect to happen when the team’s first season game, on the 22nd, comes around. We hope to see LeBron James and Anthony Davis back on the court full time.