Some of the star luster has come off the Timberwolves at Lakers showdown Sunday night at Staples Center.
Anthony Davis is out for the Lakers Sunday night, due to a calf contusion suffered in the Lakers’ opener, then re-aggravated it on Christmas Day.
Minnesota’s Karl-Anthony Towns has the more serious injury: He dislocated his left wrist in the fourth quarter of the Jazz game Saturday, and he is out not only for Sunday but is listed as week-to-week. Coach Ryan Saunders said pregame there is no timetable for Towns’ return.
The Timberwolves’ offense is based around the elite skills of Towns — their offense was 12 points per 100 possessions worse last season when he sat. This season he has averaged 19 points and 11.5 points per game as Minnesota got off to a fast 2-0 start. D'Angelo Russell and Anthony Edwards will be asked to pick up the slack, but this is a huge blow to Minnesota. Naz Ried will start in place of Towns.
Davis played through his calf issue on Christmas and didn’t show any issues, he put up 28 points on 16 shots while grabbing eight rebounds in the Lakers’ blowout win over Dallas. But after the re-aggravation, the Lakers decided to give Davis the night off to rest that calf, something Lakers coach Frank Vogel announced at shootaround. The injury must not be that bad, Davis was out getting some shots up pregame (with a sleeve over his calf).
Davis has been the best Laker through the start of the season, averaging 23 points and 7.5 rebounds a game, while shooting 42.9 percent from three ( on a career-tying 3.5 attempts a game) and playing elite defense.