Lakers’ James, Suns’ Booker Out For Monday’s Matchup

Lakers star LeBron James has been ruled out for Monday’s contest in Phoenix due to left ankle soreness, tweets Kyle Goon of The Southern California News Group.

Guard Austin Reaves will also be sidelined with a right ankle sprain, while fellow guard Patrick Beverley is questionable with right calf soreness.

It will be James’ eighth missed game thus far in 2022/23, and the timing isn’t great since Anthony Davis is reportedly out for at least a month after injuring his right foot in Friday’s win over Denver. However, it’s the second game of a back-to-back — the Lakers defeated the Wizards on Sunday night — so the team is likely being cautious with its star forward, who will turn 38 on December 30.

Losing Reaves is a big blow as well. His counting stats are fairly modest — he’s averaging 10.8 PPG, 3.1 RPG and 2.1 APG through 29 games (29.5 MPG) — but his efficiency is elite: his shooting slash line is .521/.391/.915, including a .680 true shooting percentage. It will be the 24-year-old’s first missed game of 2022/23.

The Suns will also be without their best player, writes Duane Rankin of The Arizona Republic. Shooting guard Devin Booker, who was previously listed as questionable with groin soreness, has been downgraded to out for tonight’s game against the Lakers.

Booker scored a season-high 58 points in Saturday’s victory over New Orleans, but he’d been dealing with left hamstring tightness early last week, which caused him to miss a couple games. It’s unclear if the two injuries are related or how long the 26-year-old might be sidelined, but the fact that he was initially deemed questionable seems to indicate that he should be back in action fairly soon.

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