Late-March 2021 NBA Injury Report

We hate when it happens, but here's the latest on who's injured in the NBA.

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Robert Hanashiro / USA TODAY Sports

The NBA did an exceptional job adapting to the COVID-19 era of sports. The Orlando bubble proved to be a success by the standard of “some basketball is better than no basketball.” And the 2020-2021 season is chugging along without any major hiccups. Yet the NBA is still the NBA. Meaning that the unfortunate reality of seeing some of our favorite stars go down due to injuries is inevitable. The only thing worse than seeing your favorite player get hurt is having to watch your favorite team play without them. I’m going to highlight some of the major injuries across the Association. I am to help everyone avoid tuning into their squad just to realize their favorite star is rocking the newest Dior T on the sideline and cheering on the deepest, darkest spots of the depth chart. 

Lakers fan, let’s start with you. LA’s favorite team will be a snooze fest for the next one to three weeks. They have sidelined Anthony Davis since mid-February with a strained calf. They expect to re-evaluate him this week, but there’s no set return date yet. As if that wasn’t bad enough, LeBron James went down this past weekend against Atlanta with a high-ankle sprain. Shams of the Atlantic reported that the King is expected to miss several weeks. The supporting cast, including Kyle Kuzma, Montrezl Harrell, and Dennis Schroder, will have to step up to keep the Lakers near the top of the conference.

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The injury saga for the Golden State Warriors continues as well. Losing Klay Thompson to a torn Achilles in November was a devastating blow to Bay area fans and NBA fans alike. Hopefully Klay will be ready to take the floor opening day next season. Now with GS fighting for a playoff spot, Stephen Curry missing games due to a tailbone injury is less than ideal. Wes Goldberg of The San Jose Mercury News reports that Steph is going to miss his third straight game tonight. Fingers crossed we’ll see him take the floor Thursday against the Kings. 

The Philadelphia 76ers are sitting at the top of Eastern conference due to the play of potential MVP candidate Joel Embiid. That was, of course, until the big man went down with a knee injury earlier this month. The Sixers have stayed tough in the absence of the All-Star, managing an impressive 4-1 record without him. Sure, they’re winning games. However, the watchability of Philly significantly declines without JoJo.

The Brooklyn Nets have so much firepower that you might not even notice when one of their stars is missing. Conversely, when two of them are out, it becomes pretty obvious. Kevin Durant has been out with a strained hamstring since February 13. KD is back this year after missing last season due to a torn Achilles. Without a return date it makes sense for Brooklyn to be cautious considering all the weapons they have on their roster. Fellow All-Star Kyrie Irving will additionally miss the next three games due to a personal matter. Shams of the Atlantic also reports. Luckily for Brooklyn, newly acquired big man Blake Griffin is active and should be able to pick up some slack.

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Lastly, and arguably the most disappointing loss, is that of Charlotte Hornets star rookie and number-three pick overall, LaMelo Ball. Melo, who averaged 16pts, 6ast, and 6reb per game, will miss the rest of the season with a fractured right wrist. The Hornets are currently sitting at 6th in the East, mostly due to the play of Melo. The squad will definitely have their work cut out for them if they want to hold onto that playoff spot. 

Injuries suck and you hate to see it. Nevertheless, it’s a natural part of the game. I wish a speedy recovery to everyone mentioned above. I won’t lie, though, I’m excited to see who will step up and make the most of their extra minutes. I’m a gambling man and I’d wager we should expect some sloppy and boring play this week. But who knows? Maybe we’ll see the rise of a new star during the injury prone month of March.

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