UPDATE: Anthony Davis got his wish and has been cleared to play in the Lakers’ must-win Game 6, which was first reported Yahoo Sports and TNT reporter Chris Haynes, then confirmed by the team with the release of the starting lineups (Davis is starting):
— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) June 4, 2021
There is no word on a minutes limit, but Frank Vogel and the Lakers staff will watch him closely.
The Lakers have struggled without Anthony Davis on the court this series, for example, getting blown out in Game 5. The Lakers’ system is built around two complementary stars with role players trying to fit in around them, but remove one of those stars and it all falls apart.
Davis plans to play in Game 6, but it will depend upon warmups, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) June 4, 2021
Davis tried to warm up before Game 5 but could not move well enough to be cleared by team doctors (although the Lakers played that close to the vest until the final minutes).
Lakers coach Frank Vogel said pregame the Lakers have a game plan for if Davis can play, and one for if he cannot. He added that it will come down to the warmups.
If Davis does play, how well he can move will be at issue — Chris Paul and Devin Booker will draw him into defensive actions from the opening tip and test him. If Davis is not moving well laterally, he will be exposed.
But even 75% of Davis might be the boost the Lakers need in a must-win Game 6, down 3-2 to the Suns but at home at Staples Center.
The good news for the Lakers is that Kentavious Caldwell-Pope will return for the Lakers in Game 6.
Frank Vogel said KCP will play.
Anthony Davis is still in the process of loosening up the groin. Game-time decision.
— Mike Trudell (@LakersReporter) June 4, 2021