Pacific Notes: LeBron, Suns, Beverley, Warriors

After leaving Sunday’s game midway through the fourth quarter due to a sore right ankle, Lakers star LeBron James will miss the club’s game on Monday vs. Denver as a result of the same issue, tweets Shams Charania of The Athletic. James’ status for L.A.’s next game – against the Clippers on Thursday – is uncertain, Charania adds.

The fact that LeBron will miss tonight’s game isn’t a major surprise, despite the fact that the Lakers are fighting to secure the fifth or sixth seed in the West. After last night’s game, the four-time MVP suggested that getting healthy was more of a priority than chasing regular season wins down the stretch.

“It doesn’t matter at the end of the day (where the Lakers land in the standings) if I’m not 100% or close to 100%,” James said, per Dave McMenamin of ESPN.

Here’s more from around the Pacific:

  • While Suns owner Robert Sarver has faced plenty of criticism over the years for the way he has run the franchise, it appears he got it right when he hired first-time general manager James Jones to run the team’s front office, as Jabari Young of CNBC writes. “The thing about Robert that has not changed or ever will change is his passion and his desire to win and his commitment to winning,” Suns CEO Jason Rowley said. “He’s gotten better and matured as an owner, as anybody does in a position that’s new to them.”
  • Clippers guard Patrick Beverley, who has been out since April 8 due to a fractured hand, was able to do 5-on-5 work in practice, according to head coach Tyronn Lue, who said the team will see how Beverley’s hand responds before providing an update on his status (Twitter link via Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN). If Beverley feels good, he should be on track to return to action later this week.
  • With Minnesota playing well as of late, Ethan Strauss of The Athletic explores whether there’s a chance that the Warriors could end up with a better shot at a top-five pick with their own first-rounder than with the Timberwolves’ selection.
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