LeBron James (adductor) day-to-day, says Kyrie Irving ban ‘excessive’


EL SEGUNDO, Calif. — LeBron James did not suffer a tear in his groin late in the Los Angeles Lakers‘ loss to the LA Clippers on Wednesday, an MRI revealed Thursday.

Lakers coach Darvin Ham said James is day-to-day going forward. The team has officially listed him as out for Friday’s game against the Sacramento Kings due to a left adductor strain.

“It’s not torn, that’s the biggest thing, that he didn’t tear anything,” Ham said. “So it was good news. You know, I’m sure it’s painful. Doubtful, day-to-day, whatever — I’m just happy there wasn’t anything torn.”

As difficult as the start of the season has been for the 2-9 Lakers, there is a bit of a silver lining when it comes to the timing of James’ injury.

The Lakers play at home Friday against the Kings and Sunday against the Brooklyn Nets and then don’t play another game until Friday, Nov. 18, against the Detroit Pistons. James could take eight days off to rehabilitate his injury and miss only two games in the process.

James missed 17 straight games in his first season with the Lakers in 2018-19 because of a left groin tear and eventually shut things down before the end of the 82-game schedule to enter into offseason rehab early.

James told reporters Wednesday that his current discomfort is “not as bad” as what he went through four years ago.

Ham presented an optimistic front despite the latest challenge to face his team.

“People get caught up in just wanting to be mean because you’re having a little slippage or you’re dropping a few games,” Ham said. “But I’m not built like that. I’m not wired like that. My thing is to look at the positives, look at the negatives, what went wrong, how can we correct it? What went right, how can we sustain it? And put it out there, just in the manner of us trying to get better as a team in a business-like manner.

“So, all of the emotion and the fake rah-rah stuff, nah, we don’t do that. We just keep it real, keep it straight and try to get better every day.”

James was wearing a sleeve on his left leg and donning slippers on the practice floor when reporters were allowed in at the end of Thursday’s practice.

He declined to speak to the media.

While James did not elaborate on his injury, he did take to social media to address the five-game suspension that Nets guard Kyrie Irving is serving for promoting a documentary that contained misinformation and antisemitic tropes and then being reticent to apologize for his actions.

The Nets have outlined a series of requirements Irving must fulfill before his suspension is lifted, implying that the suspension could last beyond five games until he completes them.

Last week, James condemned Irving’s decision to share the documentary.

“He caused some harm and I think it’s unfortunate,” James said. “But I don’t stand on the position to harm people when it comes to your voice or your platform or anything. So it doesn’t matter what color your skin is, how tall you are, what position you’re in. If you are promoting or soliciting or saying harmful things to any community that harms people, then I don’t respect it. I don’t condone it.”

The Lakers host Brooklyn on Sunday in the first game on the Nets’ schedule after the five-game suspension period for Irving will have passed.

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