LeBron James and Anthony Davis both ruled out for Lakers vs. East-leading Celtics

BOSTON (AP) — Lakers stars LeBron James and Anthony Davis were both ruled out of Los Angeles’ national television matchup with the East-leading Celtics on Thursday night due to “active” injuries coach Darvin Ham said the team has been managing throughout the season.

The team said James is dealing with a left ankle injury. Davis sat with an Achilles tendon issue and left hip spasms.

“Got inflamed a little bit. But we let them go through shoot around and see how it was,” Ham said before the game. “It was determined ultimately that they would be out for the game.”

He did not offer a timeline on how long either player would be sidelined.

It marked the first time this season both players have sat out the same game for the Lakers as they try to improve their standing in a tight Western Conference playoff race. Los Angeles began the day in ninth place.

James has played in 44 of the Lakers’ 49 games this season. Davis has appeared in 46 games this season.

It’s the second straight game Davis has missed on the Lakers’ current six-game road trip. James played 36 minutes and scored 20 points in the Lakers’ 138-122 loss at Atlanta on Tuesday. It was their second straight double-digit loss, pushing their record to 24-25 on the season.

Ham said forward Jarred Vanderbilt and center Jaxson Hayes would start in place of James and Davis. They will be joined in the lineup by D’Angelo Russell, Austin Reaves and Taurean Prince.

“We have guys in the locker room that are still highly competitive, highly skilled still without our two big dogs,” Ham said. “Don’t try to put yourself on an island. Just go out and try to do it as a unit.”

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