After a rousing win over the Dallas Mavericks on Christmas Day, the Los Angeles Lakers will look to win their second game of the season against the Minnesota Timberwolves, which has won its first two games.
But the Lakers will have to do it without All-Star big man Anthony Davis, who will not be playing due to a right calf contusion, according to head coach Frank Vogel.
Lakers coach Frank Vogel says Anthony Davis (right calf contusion) is out tonight vs. Minnesota.
— Jovan Buha (@jovanbuha) December 27, 2020
The 27-year old Davis was dominant in the Lakers’ win over the Mavericks, finishing with a game-high 28 points on 10-of-16 shooting while adding eight rebounds, five assists, and two steals in 30 minutes of action, although he did sustain the calf contusion during the game.
The seven-time All Star’s absence against the Timberwolves, however, shouldn’t be much cause for concern as Vogel said that it is only a precautionary measure, according to Kyle Goon of the Orange County Register, especially with the Lakers playing a back to back and heading to face the Portland Trail Blazers on Monday.
Fellow Lakers All-Star LeBron James, on the other hand, will likely play in both games, per Lakers Nation, as Vogel and the coaching staff eases both Davis and James into the season after a grueling title run and a short offseason.
Lakers' plan as of now is to play LeBron both tonight and tomorrow.
"But again, we're going to be intelligent," Frank Vogel said.
— Lakers Nation (@LakersNation) December 27, 2020
Without Davis, Los Angeles is expected to play Kyle Kuzma, Montrezl Harrell, Marc Gasol, and Markieff Morris more minutes. Harrell in particular has played well for the Lakers in just two games and is coming off a 22-point, 7-rebound effort off the bench against Dallas.
The Timberwolves, meanwhile, also face questions about the availability of their star big man Karl Anthony Towns. Towns suffered a left wrist injury in Minnesota’s 116-111 win over the Utah Jazz and said that he is dealing with a heavy soreness.