There were a few big NBA matchups on Christmas Day this year, but the one that came with the biggest surprise was the primetime Lakers vs. Warriors game. The Lakers pulled out a huge upset, and they were able to hold on to the lead even when LeBron James left with a groin injury. This now raises questions about how the young Lakers can hold their own with LeBron possibly out of the picture for a few weeks, and just how severe LeBron’s groin injury really is.
The Lakers star said he heard a “pop” from his groin when he slipped going for a loose ball under the Warriors basket. Trainers helped him try and stretch it out on the bench, but LeBron was obviously in pain. He was eventually helped back to the locker room and did not return to the game.
LeBron told reporters that initial evaluation suggests the groin is still “intact,” and that he’s just dealing with a slight left groin strain. He will undergo an MRI today to determine the exact severity of the injury. If the MRI reveals a mild strain as LeBron suggested, his Optimal Recovery Time would be 3 weeks. The veteran could probably return after around 2 weeks, but he wouldn’t be medically healed until the 3 week mark. The concerning details is that LeBron reportedly heard a “pop” from his groin when he slipped. This could mean partial tearing of the groin, and a more moderate, Grade 2 strain. If that’s the case, LeBron’s Optimal Recovery Time would be around 5 weeks.
There is no denying that LeBron has been extremely healthy in his career. Other than a few ankle sprains, he’s barely missed time to injuries. He did admit yesterday that he’s dealt with a similar groin injury before, but that it has been a “very long time.” Having a short injury history is a good sign for LeBron’s recovery, but at 33, muscle strains can still be tricky injuries.
Stay tuned for more information as results from today’s MRI are announced.