Los Angeles Lakers F LeBron James will sit out the rest of the regular season due to his ankle injury. The Lakers were eliminated from playoff contention on Tuesday night against the Phoenix Suns, a game James sat out due to the ankle. Los Angeles had an outside shot of getting into the play-in tournament as the 10-seed. Instead, the Lakers will miss the postseason entirely after winning a championship two seasons ago. Apparently, LeBron wasn’t joking on April Fool’s Day.
I’m out for the season officially. ♂️. See y’all in the fall. ✌— LeBron James (@KingJames) April 1, 2022
James, Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook all sat out of the Lakers’ loss to the Golden State Warriors on Thursday night. Chances are all three will remain sidelined through the end of the regular season on Sunday. There’s nothing to play for and they all live in Los Angeles. So the Lakers will head into the offseason with a few more days left in the regular season basically.
The next step for L.A. will likely be firing head coach Frank Vogel. It’s not all his fault. Bringing in Westbrook was a bad idea that sacrificed depth for a third star. Westbrook never worked out playing with James and AD. Russ could end up being traded this offseason in the likely second major move from the Lakers after Vogel is ousted. We could see Vogel land on his feet pretty fast if other head coaching opportunities arise during the offseason.
AD and LeBron are both under contract. Does that mean the Lakers will keep both of them? Not necessarily. But it would be very surprising to see either of them traded away during the offseason. The Lakers need to focus on getting rid of aging players and veterans and adding depth behind the two superstars.