CLEVELAND (AP) — The flu shut down Anthony Davis. That’s the only thing stopping him lately.
Davis was forced to leave Los Angeles’ game against the Cleveland Cavaliers after the first quarter on Tuesday night, as the Lakers struggled in a 116-102 loss without their All-Star center.
Davis had 99 points in his first two games and has been strong in his last 10 as the Lakers erased a poor start to the season with an 8-2 run. He scored just one point in eight minutes before he was forced off.
Davis didn’t attempt a shot while adding three rebounds and two assists before being forced to play the night.
Lakers coach Darwin Ham said Davis’ symptoms gradually worsened throughout the day.
“His temperature was 101 degrees Fahrenheit, a little bit variable,” Ham said. “AD wanted to try and play, but he felt too weak. He was exhausted and dehydrated. Obviously, with the way he’s been playing lately, it’s a huge loss.”
Hamm said Davis is unlikely to play Wednesday in Toronto. He also emphasized that Davis had not tested positive for COVID-19.
“Because of COVID, people forget that there’s a common cold and a common flu out there,” Ham said. “That’s what we’re dealing with.”
The eight-time All-Star, who has played in just 76 games over the past two seasons due to injury, was selected Monday after averaging 37.8 points, 13.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 3.3 blocks in four games. Western Conference Player of the Week.
In his previous 10 games, the 29-year-old averaged 34.2 points and 15.4 rebounds. He’s shooting 63 percent from the field and 86 percent from the free-throw line.
Davis scored 55 points to go along with 17 rebounds and three blocks in Sunday night’s win over Washington. In the last game against Milwaukee, he scored 44 points.
Without him, the Lakers lacked interior defense, and Cavaliers center Jarrett Allen scored 24 points, including 22 on 10-for-11 shooting in the first half.
LeBron James tried to make up for mistakes and grabbed 17 rebounds — his most in a road game. Substitute Thomas Bryant came on for Davis and scored a season-high 19 points in 28 minutes, but Los Angeles couldn’t offset the loss of Davis.
“It’s a tall order,” James said. “Literally and figuratively.”