Lakers' James out at least 1 more game due to sprained ankle

Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James, upper left, shoots as Toronto Raptors forward Stanley Johnson, lower left, and guard Rodney Hood defend during the first half of an NBA basketball game Sunday, May 2, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) (Mark J. Terrill, Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

LOS ANGELES – LeBron James will miss at least one more game to make sure his sprained right ankle is as healthy as possible.

The four-time MVP will not play against the New York Knicks on Tuesday after practicing on Monday. Coach Frank Vogel said it is possible that James could return on Wednesday when the Lakers have their final regular-season home game against Houston.

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“It is sort of a soft plan for him to play tomorrow,” Vogel said. “He's going to do some more rehab work today and we'll evaluate the response to that work tomorrow.”

Vogel said James came out of Monday's practice fine and would not term Tuesday's absence as precautionary.

James originally sprained the ankle on March 20 against the Atlanta Hawks. He returned to play on April 30 against Sacramento and also took part in the May 2 game against Toronto before aggravating the injury and missing five straight.

Los Angeles is 38-30 and the seventh seed in the Western Conference. The Lakers are 1 1/2 games behind Portland for the sixth seed, which would get them out of the play-in tournament. They are 10-14 when James isn't in the lineup.


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