The Lakers would be "preoccupied with the groin" of LeBron James: how much should they push him?



All is bad for the Lakers to land at the break of the stars after the fruitless business negotiations of Anthony Davis and a 28-29 season start for Los Angeles.

The health concerns of LeBron James can be added to the list.

According to The Athletic, the team is "a little worried" that James has not fully recovered from the groin injury that he suffered at Christmas and left him behind. aside for several weeks.

From Joe Vardon:

In private, the Lakers are a little worried about LeBron. Is he completely cured of the tension of the groin that has cost him 18 worst games in career? Will he take his intensity and propel this team into the playoffs, as he did last year in Cleveland? James, 34, averages a double double for the Lakers since returning from injury (23.2 points, 10.8 rebounds, 11.0 assists), but he is not moving at the same pace and not engage at the time of the attack.

Injuries should not be taken lightly at James's age

Like Tom Brady, the decline of James's game has been predicted on many occasions without success. But also, like Brady, James is definitely at the back of his heels, and an injury problem like this deserves attention.

Among James' many outstanding assets as a basketball player, one of his most valuable assets is his availability. As Vardon noted, James had never missed 18 games with a single injury in his career. The highest number of games he missed during a season is 20 in 2011-12. He played 74 or more games out of 82 in 11 of his 13 full NBA seasons.

The fact that the Lakers are worried that James, 34, who has just suffered the most serious injury in his career, makes no sense, makes sense.

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EL SEGUNDO, CA – SEPTEMBER 24: LeBron James, No. 23 Los Angeles Lakers, poses for a portrait at Media Day at the UCLA Health Training Center on September 24, 2018 in El Segundo, California. NOTE TO USER: The user expressly acknowledges and agrees that by downloading and / or using this photograph, the user agrees to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Compulsory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2018 NBAE (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein / NBAE via Getty Images)

September 24, 2018; El Segundo, California, United States; Before talking to the Los Angeles Lakers, LeBron James, before speaking with the media at the UCLA Health Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

PORTLAND, OR – OCTOBER 18: LeBron James, No. 23 Los Angeles Lakers dunks against the Portland Trail Blazers in the first quarter of their game at the Moda Center on October 18, 2018 in Portland, Oregon. NOTE TO THE USER: The user acknowledges and expressly agrees that, by downloading and / or using this photo, the user consents to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Steve Dykes / Getty Images)

Los Angeles, Calif. – October 25: LeBron James, No. 23 Los Angeles Lakers, plays basketball against Paul Millsap, No. 4 Denver Nuggets, October 25, 2018 at the STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, California . NOTE TO THE USER: The user acknowledges and expressly agrees that, by downloading and / or using this photo, the user consents to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Robert Laberge / Getty Images)

Los Angeles Lakers striker, LeBron James, celebrates with his fans after scoring during the extra time of an NBA basketball game against the San Antonio Spurs on Monday, October 22, 2018 in Los Angeles. The Spurs won 143-142. (AP Photo / Mark J. Terrill)

Striker LeBron James (23) of the Los Angeles Lakers picks up striker Paul Millsap (4) of Denver Nuggets in the first half of a basketball game in the NBA preparatory, Sunday, September 30, 2018 in San Diego. (AP Photo / Gregory Bull)

Defender Chris Paul of Houston Rockets, second from left, is retained by LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers club on the left, while Paul fights with Rajon Rondo, the masked center, in the second half of the second half. an NBA basketball game on Saturday, October 20th. 2018, in Los Angeles. The Rockets won, 124-115. (AP Photo / Marcio Jose Sanchez)

LOS ANGELES, CA – OCTOBER 22: LeBron James, No. 23 Los Angeles Lakers, misses one last second ball ahead of Rudy Gay, No. 22 San Antonio Spurs, losing 143-142 in overtime at Staples Center on October 22, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo of Harry How / Getty Images)

PHOENIX, AZ – OCTOBER 24: LeBron James, No. 23 of the Los Angeles Lakers, reacts in the NBA game against the Phoenix Suns at the Talking Stick Resort Arena on October 24, 2018 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Lakers defeated the Suns 131-113. NOTE TO THE USER: The user acknowledges and expressly agrees that, by downloading and / or using this photo, the user consents to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Christian Petersen / Getty Images)

Los Angeles, Calif. – October 25: LeBron James, No. 23 Los Angeles Lakers, plays basketball against Paul Millsap, No. 4 Denver Nuggets, October 25, 2018 at the STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, California . NOTE TO THE USER: The user acknowledges and expressly agrees that, by downloading and / or using this photo, the user consents to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Robert Laberge / Getty Images)

Las Vegas, New Zealand – October 10: LeBron James # 23 and Lance Stephenson # 6 Los Angeles Lakers celebrate after James fired a shot at the Golden State Warriors and was at fault in their pre-season match. season at T-Mobile Arena on October 10, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada. NOTE TO THE USER: The user acknowledges and expressly agrees that by downloading and / or using this photo, the user agrees to the Getty Images License Terms and Conditions. (Photo by Ethan Miller / Getty Images)

SAN DIEGO, CA – SEPTEMBER 30: LeBron James, No. 23 of Los Angeles, reacts in a pre-season game against Denver Nuggets at the Valley View Casino Center on September 30, 2018 in San Diego, California. (Photo of Harry How / Getty Images)

LOS ANGELES, CA – OCTOBER 02: LeBron James, No. 23 Los Angeles Lakers, tries to shoot in front of Torrey Craig, No. 3 of the Denver Nuggets during a pre-season game at Staples Center on October 2, 2018 in Los Angeles Angeles, California. (Photo of Harry How / Getty Images)

PORTLAND, OR – OCTOBER 18: LeBron James, No. 23 Los Angeles Lakers dunks against the Portland Trail Blazers in the first quarter of their game at the Moda Center on October 18, 2018 in Portland, Oregon. NOTE TO THE USER: The user acknowledges and expressly agrees that, by downloading and / or using this photo, the user consents to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Steve Dykes / Getty Images)

Los Angeles, Calif. – October 25: LeBron James, No. 23 Los Angeles Lakers, plays basketball against Paul Millsap, No. 4 Denver Nuggets, October 25, 2018 at the STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, California . NOTE TO THE USER: The user acknowledges and expressly agrees that, by downloading and / or using this photo, the user consents to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Robert Laberge / Getty Images)

LOS ANGELES, CA – NOVEMBER 25: LeBron James, No. 23 of the Los Angeles Lakers, scores a basket and is fouled by Mo Bamba, No. 5 of the Orlando Magic at Staples Center on November 25, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO THE USER: The user acknowledges and expressly agrees that, by downloading and / or using this photo, the user consents to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian / Getty Images)

LOS ANGELES, CA – NOVEMBER 14: LeBron James, No. 23 Los Angeles Lakers, reacts to his missed shot when he is fouled in the first half against the Portland Trail Blazers at Staples Center on the 14th November 2018 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO THE USER: The user acknowledges and expressly agrees that, by downloading and / or using this photo, the user consents to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo of Harry How / Getty Images)

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – FEBRUARY 7: LeBron James # 23 and Kyle Kuzma # 0 pick up Rajon Rondo # 9 of the Los Angeles Lakers, center, in the fourth quarter at TD Garden on February 07, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. The Lakers defeat the Celtics 129-128. NOTE TO THE USER: The user acknowledges and expressly agrees that, by downloading and / or using this photo, the user consents to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Maddie Meyer / Getty Images)




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What should the Lakers do?

Now comes the question of how they should handle this concern.

After failing to add Davis or another element making the difference before the deadline, the Lakers are playing for more than just pride for the rest of the season. This team clearly will not compete for a championship.

But this factor of pride can not be underestimated.

James has played in the playoffs every season since his second place in the league. If his famous arrival in Los Angeles ends off the playoffs, this season will be considered a massive failure. The pressure on Magic Johnson to make blockbusters will make this offseason even more intense.

And think of the reaction of all the Kobe-stans who made fun of James being the next big Laker before he adorned the purple and gold.

What do the missing qualifiers mean?

But this disaster would be mainly in terms of perception. In concrete terms, missing the playoffs would not make much difference to a likely first-round exit at the hands of one of the Western powers.

Currently, the Lakers are in 10th place in the West, three games 32 to 27 Clippers for last place in the playoffs.

Caution is prudent

So if the Lakers are really concerned about James' health, proceeding with caution is the right answer. This project does not concern this season.

It's definitely about next season and the next season.

If James is ready to rest after a break in the All-Star, the Lakers should then move at full speed with the intention of qualifying for the playoffs. This is a laudable goal.

But it's not worth risking James's health. It's a lost season in Los Angeles.

The next season still has potential and should be the main goal of the Lakers in the future.

(H / T @ NBC Sports)

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