Anthony Davis bruises back as Lakers win rough one against Knicks

first_img Lakers practice early hoping to answer all questions Lakers, Clippers schedules set for first round of NBA playoffs AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with PackersDavis (who was called for the foul) grabbed at his lower back as trainers attended to him, gently turning him from face-down to his side and then onto his back.The six-time All-Star is the primary reason behind the Lakers’ swift rise to the top of the Western Conference this season. He is averaging 27.7 points and 9.5 rebounds in his first season after the Lakers traded much of their young core and several draft picks to New Orleans to acquire him.“He’s one of our pillars,” Vogel said. “He’s our present. He’s our future. He’s one of the best players in the world. … He’s played through just about everything. He’s as tough as they come. You never want to see any of your guys suffer anything serious so just hope and pray for the best right now.”Earlier Tuesday, Davis predictably declined the Lakers’ four-year, $146 million max contract extension offer, so he can pursue a more lucrative deal as an unrestricted free agent this summer. He finished the night with five points, six rebounds, five assists, three steals and two blocks in 29 minutes.LeBron James said Davis was in relatively good spirits after the game. Trail Blazers beat Grizzlies in play-in, earn first-round series with the Lakers Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error How athletes protesting the national anthem has evolved over 17 years center_img Trail Blazers, Grizzlies advance to NBA play-in game; Suns, Spurs see playoff dreams dashed Conversely, they held the improving Knicks (10-27) to 38.9 percent (38 for 95) from the field.Kyle Kuzma chipped in with 16 points, and, as he’d promised, Avery Bradley was available despite tweaking his right ankle in Sunday’s victory over the Pistons. Bradley finished with 12 points on 5-for-9 shooting.Afterward, the Lakers’ thoughts were with Davis, who has lost time to costly injuries before in his career but who has continued to deliver elite effort despite that history and other nagging ailments.“That’s just the competitor he is, that’s who is to his core, he’s a hooper,” said guard Alex Caruso. “That’s how he knows how to play the game … if A.D.’s not playing hard, not going for blocks, not playing right, everyone’s gonna be questioning him. The fact that he can do that, night-in and night-out, year after year, taking the beating that he did, it’s pretty honorable.”“Obviously we know what A.D.’s meant for this team,” James said. “Obviously there’s no replacing him. You can’t say you replace what he does; he does everything. But everybody else has gotta chip in and be better. We’ll see what happens with his injury and take it from there.” “His mood was great – as great as it can be with the fall that he took,” said James, who played through a bout of sickness Tuesday. “I asked him if I could do anything for him and he said you got a win for me. That’s what our team is all about.”It was an all-around taxing day at the office for the Lakers, even as they improved to 30-7 and won their sixth consecutive game.James was feeling so poorly his playing status was a game-time decision. It wasn’t until about 5:45 p.m. – less than two hours before tip-off – that the NBA’s leading assist man entered the locker room, which wasn’t filled with his music pregame as it typically is.“(Skipping the game) crossed my mind a couple times throughout the day, just how I was feeling,” James said. “But I felt like I could give more on the floor than off the floor.”Additionally, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope took a shot to the head from Bobby Porter that resulted in a flagrant 2 foul call and Porter’s ejection. After Caldwell-Pope underwent concussion tests and was cleared, he returned and finished with 15 points in 18 minutes.Later, former Laker Reggie Bullock (who started Tuesday in place of an injured Marcus Morris, who scored a career-high 38 points against the Clippers on Sunday) also drew the crowd’s ire in the third quarter when he spun around JaVale McGee, flinging him down beneath the Lakers’ basket. Bullock was assessed a flagrant 1 foul on the play.Vogel knew James was feeling “lousy,” but once the Lakers’ leader stepped on the court — to the Knicks’ dismay, to be sure – he delivered a robust stat line, finishing with a game-high 31 points, five rebounds, five assists, two steals and a blocked shot (one of, ahem, only 10 for the Lakers, who’d recorded 20 against Detroit on Sunday).He logged 32 minutes, hit a season-high-tying 6 of 12 3-point attempts, muscled up shots and even confronted Portis after he connected with Caldwell-Pope’s head, sending the Laker guard’s headband flying.“There was no play on the ball,” James said. “I seen the wind-up happen before the actual impact. I seen the way he was chasing KCP down. And then the wind-up. I saw that play happening before it actually happened. So I just voiced my words to what happened and then the refs came in between us, but I knew it definitely was not a basketball play.”As far as the actual basketball went, the Lakers shot 50 percent (41 for 82), including 47.2 percent (17 for 36) from 3-point range – thanks in small part to backup center Dwight Howard, who made his one attempt from behind the arc. Howard, whose one-year veteran’s minimum contract became fully guaranteed Tuesday, finished with five blocks for the second consecutive game.Related Articles PreviousLos Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James, left, shoots as New York Knicks center Mitchell Robinson defends during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020, in Los Angeles. The Lakers won 117-87. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)Knicks forward Bobby Portis, right, fouls Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope during the first half Tuesday’s game at Staples Center. Portis was ejected from the game after the flagrant foul. (AP Photo/Mark J. 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NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: Kyle Kuzma #0 of the Los Angeles Lakers rebounds the ball during the first half of a game against the New York Knicks at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: Bobby Portis #1 of the New York Knicks rebounds past Anthony Davis #3 of the Los Angeles Lakers during the first half of a game at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. 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NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: Mitchell Robinson #23 of the New York Knicks rebounds the ball past Alex Caruso #4 of the Los Angeles Lakers during the second half of a game at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: Alex Caruso #4 of the Los Angeles Lakers reacts to a play during the second half of a game against the New York Knicks at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. 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NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: Elfrid Payton #6 of the New York Knicks defends against the dribble of LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers during the second half of a game at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)New York Knicks forward Julius Randle, right, shoots as Los Angeles Lakers forward Anthony Davis defends during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020, in Los Angeles. The Lakers won 117-87. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: Anthony Davis #3 of the Los Angeles Lakers looks on during the first half of a game against the New York Knicks at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: Mitchell Robinson #23 of the New York Knicks blocks a shot by Alex Caruso #4 of the Los Angeles Lakers during the second half of a game at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers takes a shot past the defense of Kevin Knox II #20 of the New York Knicks during the second half of a game at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)New York Knicks guard Elfrid Payton, second from right, loses control of his shot as Los Angeles Lakers guard Danny Green, left, center JaVale McGee, second from left, and forward Anthony Davis defend during the first half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)New York Knicks forward Julius Randle, right, shoots as Los Angeles Lakers forward Anthony Davis defends during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020, in Los Angeles. Davis was injured on the play and left the game. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)Los Angeles Lakers forward Anthony Davis winces after hitting the court while trying to defend against a shot by New York Knicks forward Julius Randle, right, as center Mitchell Robinson watches during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020, in Los Angeles. Davis left the game. The Lakers won 117-87. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)Los Angeles Lakers forward Anthony Davis winces as he hits the court after falling while trying to defend against a shot by New York Knicks forward Julius Randle during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020, in Los Angeles. Davis left the game. The Lakers won 117-87. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)Los Angeles Lakers forward Anthony Davis winces as he hits the ground after falling while trying to defend against a shot by New York Knicks forward Julius Randle during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020, in Los Angeles. Davis left the game. The Lakers won 117-87. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: Anthony Davis #3 of the Los Angeles Lakers lays on the ground after being injured in a collision while defending Julius Randle #30 of the New York Knicks during the second half of a game at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: Alex Caruso #4, JaVale McGee #7, Rajon Rondo #9 and Dwight Howard #39 look on as Anthony Davis #3 of the Los Angeles Lakers lies on the ground after being injured contesting a shot by Julius Randle #30 of the New York Knicks look on during the second half of a game at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: Alex Caruso #4, JaVale McGee #7, Rajon Rondo #9 and Dwight Howard #39 look on as Anthony Davis #3 of the Los Angeles Lakers lies on the ground after being injured contesting a shot by Julius Randle #30 of the New York Knicks look on during the second half of a game at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers looks on during the second half of a game against the New York Knicks at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers passes the ball during the second half of a game against the New York Knicks at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers dribbles upcourtduring the second half of a game against the New York Knicks at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: Elfrid Payton #6 of the New York Knicks dribbles past Avery Bradley #11 of the Los Angeles Lakers during the first half of a game at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: Rajon Rondo #9 of the Los Angeles Lakers passes the ball past the defense of Mitchell Robinson #23 of the New York Knicks during the second half of a game at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: Actor Jack Nicholson looks on during the second half of a game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the New York Knicks at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 07: Kyle Kuzma #0 of the Los Angeles Lakers shoots past RJ Barrett #9 and Mitchell Robinson #23 of the New York Knicks during the second half of a game at Staples Center on January 07, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)Los Angeles Lakers center Dwight Howard dunks as New York Knicks forward Kevin Knox II, left, center Mitchell Robinson, center, and guard Allonzo Trier, right, watch along with Lakers forward Jared Dudley during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020, in Los Angeles. The Lakers won 117-87. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)Los Angeles Lakers center Dwight Howard celebrates his dunk as New York Knicks forward Kevin Knox II, left, turns away during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020, in Los Angeles. The Lakers won 117-87. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)Los Angeles Lakers center Dwight Howard gestures after making a 3-point shot during the second half of the team’s NBA basketball game against the New York Knicks on Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020, in Los Angeles. The Lakers won 117-87. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)New York Knicks guard Allonzo Trier, left, shoots as Los Angeles Lakers center Dwight Howard defends during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020, in Los Angeles. The Lakers won 117-87. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)New York Knicks guard RJ Barrett, left, shoots as Los Angeles Lakers center Dwight Howard defends during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020, in Los Angeles. The Lakers won 117-87. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)Los Angeles Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, right, shoots as New York Knicks forward Julius Randle during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020, in Los Angeles. The Lakers won 117-87. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)Los Angeles Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, left, and New York Knicks guard Wayne Ellington reach for a loose ball during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020, in Los Angeles. The Lakers won 117-87. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James, left, shoots as New York Knicks center Mitchell Robinson defends during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020, in Los Angeles. The Lakers won 117-87. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)Knicks forward Bobby Portis, right, fouls Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope during the first half Tuesday’s game at Staples Center. Portis was ejected from the game after the flagrant foul. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)NextShow Caption1 of 61Knicks forward Bobby Portis, right, fouls Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope during the first half Tuesday’s game at Staples Center. Portis was ejected from the game after the flagrant foul. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)ExpandLOS ANGELES — As far as 30-point wins go, this one was a bummer.A shudder went through Laker Nation late in the third quarter on Tuesday, when Anthony Davis landed violently on his tailbone, staying down for several minutes before he eventually was able to rise to his feet and walk gingerly toward the locker room, with some stunned chants of “M-V-P” emanating from the crowd.The Lakers said X-rays were negative, but that the Lakers big man bruised his sacrum – the bottom part of his spine above the tailbone. Coach Frank Vogel said Davis was due to have additional testing (an MRI) on the bruised tailbone and that the team would have an update Wednesday. According to Yahoo Sports’ Chris Haynes, Davis said he expected to miss some time.The Lakers star was injured with 2:45 left in the third quarter of the Lakers’ 117-87 victory, after he’d leaped high to meet Julius Randle in midair, attempting to defend the Knicks forward’s drive toward the rim. While elevated, Davis was turned just enough that he was unable to brace himself when he fell.last_img read more