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Kentavious Caldwell-Pope’s status for Lakers Game 5 vs. Suns, revealed

kentavious caldwell pope

Good news for the Los Angeles Lakers ahead of the biggest game of the season: Kentavious Caldwell-Pope is expected to play in Tuesday’s Game 5 vs. the Phoenix Suns, according to ESPN’s Dave McMenamin and Adrian Wojnarowski.

KCP missed Game 4 on Sunday with knee soreness. He exited Game 3 early with what was initially described as a quad contusion.

KCP received an MRI on Friday that revealed no structural damage and his wife, McKenzie, provided an upbeat diagnosis.

During his post-practice media availability on Monday, Caldwell-Pope said he was close to suiting up in Game 4.

“I wanted to play, man, it was just 50/50. Felt a little soreness in my knee, so I kind of called it.”

Wesley Matthews started in place of Caldwell-Pope in Game 4. The short-handed Lakers fell at Staples Center, 100-92.

He was optimistic about his prospects for the pivotal showdown on Tuesday at Phoenix Suns Arena after how his knee responded.

“I felt fine. No pain,” Caldwell-Pope said. “So we’ve just got to see. I’m still day-to-day. I feel soreness here and there, but we’ll see. I felt good when I woke up.”

Already down one starter, Los Angeles — whose season has been plagued by injuries since February — lost star big-man Anthony Davis at halftime of Game 4.

Davis is unlikely to play in Game 5 as he nurses a Grade-1 groin strain, though no official announcement has been made by the team. Davis, like Caldwell-Pope, is listed as “questionable” on the team’s injury report.

The Lakers will only go as far as their superstars are physically able to take them, but having their best 3-and-D option back should help, as long as the knee doesn’t deplete KCP’s elite lateral quickness as he tries to keep up with Devin Booker.

The Lakers also need somebody to knock down open 3s and are desperately hoping Caldwell-Pope finds his stroke. The swingman led the Lakers in three-point accuracy during the regular season (41%) but is mired in a 1-of-13 slump in the Phoenix series.