Will LeBron James & Anthony Davis Return Tonight? Pelicans vs Lakers: Preview, Injury Updates & Predictions

Published 03/23/2021, 11:30 AM EDT
Mar 21, 2021; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Los Angeles Lakers injured forward LeBron James (left) and Anthony Davis against the Phoenix Suns during the first half at Phoenix Suns Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports


New Orleans Pelicans will prepare to host an injury-ravaged Los Angeles Lakers team in this NBA contest. While the Pelicans have been alternating between a win and a loss for their past six games, the Lakers head into this having lost their last couple of games after winning four since the All-Star break.

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Date & Time: March 23, 2021, 6:30 pm ET

Venue: Smoothie King Center, New Orleans

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Records: Lakers (28-15), Pelicans (18-24)

Feb 12, 2021; Dallas, Texas, USA; New Orleans Pelicans forward Zion Williamson (1) celebrates with teammates after scoring during the second quarter against the Dallas Mavericks at American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Preview & Injury Updates | Pelicans

Despite having All-star caliber players in Brandon Ingram and Zion Williamson plus a much-improved Lonzo Ball, the Pelicans find themselves at 12th place in the Western Conference Table. They will look to turn it around and at least look to make the play-in tournament with a top-10 finish.

In their win over the Nuggets, Lonzo Ball sat out with a right hip flexor strain. Trade rumors have been encircling him ever since his father voiced his disapproval for the Pelicans.

Although he is only listed as questionable for this game, he will be determined to haul himself back to feature against his former team and re-ignite Pelicans’ playoff bid.

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Potential starting 5 of the Pelicans

Guard – Lonzo Ball

Guard – Eric Bledsoe

Center – Steve Adams

Forward – Brandon Ingram

Forward – Zion Williamson

Preview & Injury Updates | Lakers

In their loss to Phoenix Suns, they missed as many as three starters. Marc Gasol was cleared to return on Saturday night after remaining in quarantine because of the league’s health and safety protocols, but Vogel’s insisted on him getting back his fitness. So, he is likely to sit out this one.

As for the star duo of Anthony Davis and LeBron James, they are unlikely to feature at least until the end of the week because of their respective ankle ailments. Frank Vogel may play around with his starting lineup and spring a surprise in a bid to overturn their fortunes.

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Potential starting 5 of the Lakers

Guard – Dennis Schroder

Guard – Kentavious Caldwell-Pope

Center – Markieff Morris

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Forward – Kyle Kuzma

Forward – Wesley Matthews

Predictions | Pelicans vs Lakers

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The Pelicans inadvertently head into this clash as the favorites over their fellow title-aspirants. They have a good chance of increasing their win column, and their offensive firepower is good enough to rattle the much-maligned defense of the Lakers.

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Bharat Aggarwal

667 articles

Bharat Aggarwal is a sports analyst for EssentiallySports, covering Formula 1 and NBA. A Delhi University graduate, Bharat has multi-year experience in sports writing, having closely worked with the content strategy aspect as well. Bharat Aggarwal supports Manchester United, Lewis Hamilton, Cristiano Ronaldo, Rafael Nadal, Dirk Nowitzki, Sachin Tendulkar, Ayrton Senna, Kristaps Porzingis, and Dallas Mavericks.

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