NBA Analyst Raises a Red Flag Over Delayed Comeback of Lakers’ Anthony Davis and Nets’ Kevin Durant

Published 03/23/2021, 10:55 PM EDT
Feb 28, 2021; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward Anthony Davis (3) sits on the bench during the game against the Golden State Warriors at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports


The 2019-20 NBA season was marred with injuries for players like Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, and John Wall, among others. The pandemic and the shortened season were another blow to the league’s operations. This year, the story is almost the same, with more injured names being adding every week from teams like the Lakers and others.

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With so many players sitting out, one wonders just how long is too long in the way of recovery time? After all, stars not showing up reflects poorly on the quality of the game and also on the viewership numbers. An NBA analyst raised serious doubts over players like Anthony Davis and KD for this.

Nets’ Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant rest during a timeout against the Warriors at the Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

The complicated case of Anthony Davis and Kevin Durant

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The Lakers’ big man, Anthony Davis, hurt himself on Feb 14 against the Nuggets and has been out ever since. Only last week, his situation was reevaluated, and it was made public that he would not show up for at least two more weeks. On the other hand, Nets’ Kevin Durant has already been recovering from his hamstring strain for over a month now.

In a recent interview, NBA analyst Stephen A. Smith took a dig at this elongated rehabilitation. The 53-YO expressed, “I’m getting suspicious. Hasn’t KD been out a little too long? I bring up KD and AD in the same sentence. AD has been out for 20 games… My antennas are getting raised, I’m about to get nosy… It’s been a little bit too long with these injuries. I’m starting to feel it’s worse than we’ve been led to believe.”

Lakers’ LeBron James puts weight on his injured leg as coach Frank Vogel looks on during the game at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

Was Smith trying to suggest that AD’s injury is more concerning than how it has been portrayed? Only Smith has the answer to this, but his comments on LeBron James certainly made more sense. The celebrated presenter further added:

“Lakers ain’t winning in West without both AD and LeBron, ain’t happening… I’m not accusing them of faking the injury by any stretch and measure, I wouldn’t accuse any player of doing that, especially LeBron. I don’t care if LeBron’s out for the next month, he deserves it. He’s been there since NBA Finals… AD is an entirely different matter. Without AD, Lakers might go home in the first round.”

Read also – Magic Johnson Explains How WC Will Be Harsh on Lakers with LeBron James and Anthony Davis Sitting Out

What are the reasons behind this delay for the Lakers’ big guy & the Nets’ vet?

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Firstly, the Brooklyn Nets are doing pretty well even with KD out. They’re sitting on #2 in the EC and they will want a KD who is at 100% when he comes back.

Secondly, the Lakers know that their chances of going deeper into the playoffs if Anthony Davis isn’t playing at his full potential will be close to zero. So just because LeBron James is injured, the franchise might not rush AD into hitting the court.

Still, Stephen A argued, “I’m getting very, very suspicious in WC with AD, and in the EC with KD… I’m not sure there’s something not to worry about with AD… ain’t no way hell he’s going to come back 100%… I don’t think anyone can be sure about Lakers because they need both to defend their crown.”

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What is refreshing is that AD has been traveling with the Lakers and also working out with them. So one can guess that he has recovered, and it is only a matter of time before he makes a starry comeback.

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Sourabh Singh

1121 articles

Sourabh Singh is an NBA sports analyst for EssentiallySports, who has been working with the site since May 2020. Prior to this, he functioned as Managing Editor at WittyFeed, followed by a stint at Decathlon. The Sports Management graduate leads an active lifestyle, veering to the mountains for off-trail adventures.

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