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For Anthony Davis, the Lake Show must go on.
Davis, who posted 24 points and 12 rebounds in the Los Angeles Lakers 123-115 win over the Phoenix Suns on Tuesday night despite experiencing pain in his shoulder and ribs, still wants to play.
But he will listen to his body.
“We’ll see how the shoulder injury and the ribs feel tomorrow when I get up,” Davis told ESPN’s Dave McMenamin. “And we’ll go from there.”
According to Mike Trudell of NBA.com, the X-Rays performed on the right side of the Lakers center’s ribs came back negative. The team announced that they will re-evaluate Davis before Wednesday, when L.A. hosts the Golden State Warriors.
Trudell also shared that Davis thinks it’s important to play through pain.
“There’s really never a play I don’t feel it,” Davis told Jasmyn Wimbish of CBS Sports after the Lakers’ 113-104 loss to the Toronto Raptors Sunday night. “I try not to let it affect my game. I just play through it and then worry about taking care of it after the game.”
To that end, Davis has had his shoulder wrapped and his ribs taped before and after games.
“It’s tough for me to lead from the sidelines,” Davis told Trudell. “I know what our goal is.”
Since the Lakers traded for him that past summer, that goal has been singular: a championship.
That kind of grit and dedication to the goal seems to be rubbing off on his teammates.
“He wants to play,” LeBron James told McMenamin. “He wants to play, and we just have to pick it up. For him, when he’s showing that grit when he’s playing with injuries, there’s no reason for any of us not to be out there as well. He’s been showing everything.”
As a whole, the Lakers have been a bit banged up to start the season.
Kyle Kuzma (stress reaction in ankle), Rajon Rondo (calf) and Troy Daniels (right knee) are all trying to work their way back from injuries.
Additionally, DeMarcus Cousins is rehabbing from a torn ACL in his left knee.
It’s unclear if Davis will be able to push through for the entire season without having to rest or receive treatment, but his play has been instrumental to the Lakers’ early success.
They are off to an 8-2 start, good enough for the best record in the loaded Western Conference.
Through 10 games, Davis is averaging 26.3 points, 10.4 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 2.9 blocks per outing.
Rajon Rondo Makes Season Debut
Rick Scuteri/Associated Press
It seems fitting that in the game that Rajon Rondo made his season debut, the Lakers rack up 39 assists, the most they’ve recorded in over a decade.
The last time L.A. had 39 assists in the game was against the Utah Jazz on April 4, 2009.
Not surprisingly, seven of those 39 dimes came from Rondo, who also scored five points and pulled down six rebounds in 14 minutes off the bench.
“We had 21 assists at halftime, and we made the extra pass,” Rondo said after the game, per Spectrum Sportsnet. “The key was not going stretches without our main guys touching the ball and getting good looks.”
That notion was praised by head coach Frank Vogel.
“We really committed to the extra pass,” Vogel told Mike Trudell of NBA.com. “I challenged our guys last game to truly commit to it. We are playing pretty good extra-pass basketball…that is the secret for us. If you truly commit to the extra pass offensively and playing for each other, we are going to be near unbeatable.”
Rondo was on a minutes restriction for his first action since being diagnosed with mild calf strain last month.
“I didn’t think about my legs or anything,” Rondo said. “I just went out there and played. Obviously, I had the minutes restriction, but I felt good tonight.”
According to Rondo, his teammates helped him simulate game scenarios the last couple of days before returning to action on Tuesday night.
“I got to give my teammates credit,” Rondo said. “They came in the last couple of days and played five on five with me and did a great job of getting me back to as close to shape as possible.”
For his part, Rondo looked spry and bouncy throughout the game, and he attributed that to the pace of the game.
“It wasn’t as fast-paced as I thought it was going to be, and that was in my favor.”
Maurice Bobb covers the NBA for Bleacher Report. Follow Maurice on Twitter, @ReeseReport.