This week there’s a big matchup that the NBA world has been waiting for since the schedule was released, the Brooklyn Nets vs. Los Angeles Lakers. However, we’re going to have to wait until the second half of the season schedule is released to see what these teams could look like at full strength.
The matchup is still set for this Thursday, but both sides could be missing a major part of their lineup. Brooklyn might be without F Kevin Durant, who will miss the next two games against the Sacramento Kings and Phoenix Suns with a hamstring strain. The Lakers will be without F Anthony Davis for a minimum of 2-3 weeks as he nurses a calf strain/Achilles tendinosis that caused him to be taken out in the second quarter of Sunday’s 122-105 loss against the Denver Nuggets.
Even that’s not a certain timetable for his return. 2-3 weeks is when he’ll be reevaluated.
By the way, this season Durant has been averaging 29 PPG, 7.3 RPG and 5.3 APG for the Nets. Davis has been averaging 22.5 PPG, 8.4 RPG and 1.8 BPG for the Lakers.
When this season began many already had their eyes on the Lakers vs. Nets as a potential NBA Finals matchup. That being because it’s the first season that Durant and Kyrie Irving would be playing together on the Nets with their deep team making a championship run. Then January 14 the NBA was put in shambles after Brooklyn landed former MVP and 3x scoring champion, James Harden, in a 4-team trade.
Now even more eyes are on this matchup, rightly so. Since the trade Brooklyn is 9-6. However, due to injury and health and safety protocols, Brooklyn’s big 3 have only played in seven games together.
That’s something to take into account, even if this matchup were to take place this Thursday with both squads at full strength.
On the Lakers side, their star’s injury could be very serious if not managed carefully. Therefore, even the possibility of AD playing in this one isn’t anywhere near being realistic.
Calf strains happen, but if his Achilles tendinosis is reaggravated (for a 3rd time this season), that could likely result in a ruptured Achilles.
Needless to say, that would significantly put a dent in the Lakers’ plans of winning back-to-back titles this season, in an already stacked NBA.
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