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LeBron James return timeline revealed as Los Angeles Lakers make playoff push

Los Angeles Lakers star forward LeBron James has missed the past 12 games with a foot injury he suffered back on February 26 against the Dallas Mavericks.

There had been some skepticism that he would miss the remainder of the season. At 38 years old, things just don’t heal as quickly as they did earlier in James’ brilliant career.

With that said, we now have a pretty good injury update on James’ status as his Lakers continue their playoff push without him.

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, James could return for the final week of regular-season action beginning April 5 against the rival Los Angeles Clippers.

This could be absolutely massive news in the tight Western Conference Playoff race. Los Angeles has gone a surprising 7-5 in the 12 games that LeBron James has missed. It is 11-6 since pulling off multiple deals ahead of February’s NBA trade deadline.

As of right now, Los Angeles finds itself just a half game behind the defending champion Golden State Warriors for the sixth seed in the Western Conference. That’s the magic spot for teams looking to avoid the play-in tournament. As the 10th seed, Los Angeles is also just a half game ahead of the Utah Jazz and New Orleans Pelicans for a spot in said play-in tournament.

Related: 2023 NBA Playoff and Finals predictions

LeBron James stats: 29.5 PPG, 8.4 RPG, 6.9 APG, 50% shooting, 31% 3-point

LeBron James injury
Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

This timeline suggests that James will miss the six games. This includes outings against fellow Western Conference Playoff hopefuls in that of the Minnesota Timberwolves and Utah Jazz.

Though, James’ potential return for the final week could loom large in that Los Angeles is slated to host the Phoenix Suns and Jazz in addition to the aforementioned Clippers. The Lakers are just 2.5 games behind Phoenix for the fourth seed in the conference.

Crazy times ahead in the NBA world.

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