After initially being ruled out at least two or three weeks when he was diagnosed with a right calf strain on Monday, Lakers star Anthony Davis was reevaluated by team doctors on Thursday and has a new recovery timeline, head coach Frank Vogel told reporters last night.
According to Dave McMenamin of ESPN, the Lakers expect that Davis will miss approximately the next four weeks. That estimate includes the time it would take him to ramp up his conditioning once he’s healthy enough to resume workouts.
“We want to try to put this fully behind him and be conservative with it, just to make sure that it’s fully healed before he’s back,” Vogel said of Davis, who has also experienced Achilles tendinosis in his right leg.
The updated timeline ensures that Davis will remain out for the Lakers’ last seven first-half games and won’t be back on the court until at least a week into the second half, which gets underway on March 10. It will also sideline him for the March 7 All-Star Game, opening the door for another Western Conference player to replace him on the roster if he’s named a reserve, which is likely.
Meanwhile, Los Angeles also had to deal with a hole in its backcourt on Thursday night vs. Brooklyn, as Dennis Schröder was out due to the NBA’s health and safety protocols. Vogel said after the game that he’s not yet sure how much time Schröder will miss as a result of those COVID-19 protocols, per McMenamin (Twitter link).
There have been some instances of players receiving clearance within a day or two if they returned a false positive or inconclusive coronavirus test, or if they were subject to a contact tracing investigation and were determined not to have been a close contact of someone who tested positive for the virus.
However, if the player is determined to have been a close contact of someone who tested positive, he’s generally sidelined for at least a week. If the player registers a confirmed positive test himself, his return timeline is usually at least two weeks or so.
Wesley Matthews replaced Schröder in the Lakers’ starting lineup on Thursday. If Schröder has to sit for a week or two, Matthews, Alex Caruso, and Quinn Cook are among the top candidates to play extra minutes.