Lakers vs Spurs: Why is LeBron James Not Playing Tonight?

Published 10/26/2021, 9:16 PM EDT
Oct 19, 2021; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (6) dunks a ball during the second half of the NBA game against the Golden State Warriors at Staples Center. The Warriors won 121-114. Mandatory Credit: Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports


LeBron James faced an injury scare last game. However, he played 40 minutes in that game against the Grizzlies. And from the looks of it, he will not be playing tonight when the Los Angeles Lakers face San Antonio Spurs tonight. According to trusted sources, LeBron James is questionable for tonight’s game due to soreness in his right ankle.

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LeBron is in the 19th season of his career. While he did continue playing last game, he will most likely not play in the game against the Spurs. It will probably be a decision on the spot depending on his requirement on the floor.

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How will the Lakers replace LeBron in tonight’s game?

As the Lakers have confirmed that LeBron James is not starting tonight, this is how the Los Angeles Lakers will look to replace him on the floor tonight. Malik Monk replaces LeBron James on the starting line-up as Lakers will play with 3 guards and 2 big men.

Until 2019, LeBron had one of the most healthy careers in the NBA’s history. However, is his body finally realizing that he is in the 19th season of his career.

Oct 22, 2021; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (6) argues with referee Justin Van Duyne (64) in the second half against the Phoenix Suns at Staples Center. The Suns defeated the Lakers 115-105. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Given his extraordinary conditioning, James may appear unstoppable. But there’s a reason why we’ve witnessed a big increase in his shot attempts from beyond the arc.

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What does this mean for the Lakers and LeBron James?

LeBron James missed nearly two months of the 2020-21 NBA season when Solomon Hill injured his right ankle during a game in March. James entered this two-month stretch as an MVP candidate and left just in time for the purple and gold to be eliminated in the first round of the Playoffs.

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This seems like a precautionary step from the Lakers to sit LeBron James down early on to avoid a serious injury. However, as the Lakers have entered their first back-to-back game set in the year, will LeBron return in the second game and play against the Thunder? If he does not play tonight, in all likelihood, he will certainly play tomorrow.

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Chaitanya Dadhwal

352 articles

Chaitanya Dadhwal is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. Even though his journalism is driven by his desire to understand both sides of an argument and give a neutral perspective, he is biased towards Houston Rockets and Arsenal, and he has shown exactly how loyal he can be through tough times. Currently a Law student at Jindal Global Law School, he aims to have his own sports management firm one day and enjoys rap music during his time off.

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