The latest update on LeBron James and Anthony Davis was pretty simple:
“Yeah, they’re both out,” Lakers coach Frank Vogel said before his shorthanded team faced the Dallas Mavericks here on Tuesday night.
And not long after, the Lakers got knocked out 128-110 by the Mavericks and Luka Doncic’s triple-double of 34 points, 12 rebounds and 12 assists.
James was out because of a sprained left ankle suffered Sunday night in New Orleans and Davis missed his 17th consecutive game with a right mid-foot sprain.
Davis practiced Monday, which was encouraging, but he still had been listed as doubtful for the game. James did his rehabilitation Monday, and he had been listed as doubtful.
“We knew they were both most likely [out] but wanted to give it overnight to make sure that they either didn’t have a change of heart or a dramatic improvement in their injuries and they did not,” Vogel said. “So, they’re out.”
The Lakers play at Utah on Thursday, a team they have defeated twice this season, but it is unlikely that James or Davis will be ready for that game.
“We’ll make that decision, I guess it’s Thursday right?” Vogel said. “It’s a Thursday/Friday back-to-back? Yeah, we’ll see where those guys are at on Thursday and make that call then.”
The Lakers host the New Orleans Pelicans on Friday night at Crypto.com Arena, another important game for Los Angeles involving the NBA’s play-in tournament.
As it now stands, the Lakers (31-44) would miss the play-in game, having fallen to the 11th place in the Western Conference, the San Antonio Spurs (31-44) now 10th based on a tiebreaker.
It was left it up to starters Russell Westbrook, Malik Monk, Austin Reaves, Stanley Johnson and Dwight Howard to contend with the Mavericks on Monday.
Westbrook had 25 points and Malik Monk 28, but it did little good.
From the start, it was no contest, the Mavericks running over the Lakers in the first, building a 43-25 lead at the end of the quarter.
The Mavericks shot 53.8% from three-point range in the first. But the biggest indignity was Maxi Kleber grabbing a rebound and dribbling the length of the court and waltzing in for a layup just before the first ended while the stood and watched.
The 82 points the Lakers surrendered in the first half was a season high.
They got down 30 in the first half and were down by 34 in the second half, which drew the ire from Vogel after they gave up yet another open three-pointer.
After Dorian Finney-Smith drilled the three, Vogel called a timeout with 9 minutes and 24 seconds left in the third and smacked his hands and yelled at his group.
It did no good. The Mavericks lead grew to 37 in the third quarter.