The defending champion Los Angeles Lakers will kick their preseason off this Friday with a showdown against the Los Angeles Clippers. The match-up comes 61 days since Game 6 of the NBA Finals, when the Lakers clinched their title.
Because of the quick turnaround being demanded of the Lakers, many have wondered whether LeBron James and Anthony Davis would suit up in the preseason.
At least for the first of the preseason, the answer appears to be no.
“We haven’t made that decision yet, but I will say it’s probably unlikely that they play,” head coach Frank Vogel said on Tuesday.
The Lakers have four preseason games on the books: another one against the Clippers on Sunday, and then road games against the Phoenix Suns on Dec. 16 and 18.
“I just want to make sure I’m good to go,” Davis told the media.
“I don’t want to rush into anything. We’ve seen, unfortunately, how football went with no preseason, shorter season, and a lot of injuries happen. You don’t kind of want that same thing. So I’m going build up the right way. Coach has been doing a great job of doing that with our team, building up the right way.”
For Davis, the number one objective at this point is staying healthy.
“I feel good, body feels good, but at the same time I got to make sure the people around me, my training staff, my trainer, training staff, coaches, also be in my ear like, ‘AD, calm down,'” he said.
“I’ve been great doing practice. I’ve been in every drill, being in condition and getting back into the swing of things, but like I said, you want to be smart about it as well.”
The Lakers’ regular season will commence on Dec. 22 at home against the Dallas Mavericks.