LeBron James' return from a high ankle sprain Friday night did not magically turn the Lakers back into destroyers.
The defending NBA champs blew an 11-point lead in the fourth quarter and lost to the Kings at home 110-106. James had an opportunity to give LA the lead with 2.7 seconds remainin stephen curry Demar Derozan jersey 2022 nba finals g but missed a 3-point shot. He finished with 16 points in 32 minutes.
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The loss dropped the fifth-place Lakers (36-27) to just one game ahead of the seventh-place Trail Blazers (35-28) in the Western Conference. The seventh- through 10th-place teams in each conference will compete in a play-in tournament prior to the start of the NBA playoffs.
James' postgame focus wasn't on the standings but rather on the Lakers gaining cohesion over the next 16 days, when they'll play nine times to complete a compressed 72-game regular-season schedule.
"How much can we make ou stephen curry icon jerse Lonzo Ball y t of these nine games? I'm not sure," he told reporters postgame. "I know as far as our chemistry, we continue to build that. We continue to log minutes out on the floor, continue to build some things, obviously.
"It's just a different s NBA Dresses and Skirts eason, not only for us but for a lot of teams. But we look forward to the challenge. It is what it is, this is the season and we've got to make the most of it."
James was back on the floor after missing 20 games with the sprain. stephen curry shoes in order He told reporters his ankle felt "tight" at times but also said he came out of the game "unscathed."
The game also marked the first time since Feb. 14 that James and Anthony Davis started together. Dav warriors jersey blouse for women warriors is went out that night with tendinosis in his right achilles. He returned to the lineup April 22.
Davis and James will use the remaining games to get on the same page with their teammates.
"Guys are still trying to get back to playing with myself and LeBron. We ha stephen curry replica jersey ve nine games left to get it going," Davis said, per The As Marc Gasol sociated Press. "We don't want to be in a play-in situation. Even though we don't want to lose, we want to gain momentum. We are confident in ourselves and once the playoffs start it is a different story."