Los Angeles Lakers vs Phoenix Suns NBA Playoffs Match Preview
Anthony Davis posted a consecutive 34-point performance to give the Los Angeles Lakers a brief lead in their Western Conference first-round series against the Phoenix Suns.
However, a knee injury has cast doubt on his availability for the fourth game on Sunday. He played, but now a strained left groin puts him in big doubt for Tuesday's Game 5 at Phoenix.
Davis collapsed to the ground after a basket practice late in the second quarter of Los Angeles' 100-92 loss to the Suns on Sunday. The loss tied the series at two wins each.
LeBron James had 25 points, 12 rebounds and six assists in a losing effort. The quadruple NBA MVP is likely to be asked to take on more burden if Davis can't play.
Kyle Kuzma would likely have more playing time if Davis couldn't play. The 25-year-old started the second half in place of Davis and finished with 11 points on Sunday.
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope could return to the roster Tuesday after missing Game 4 with a left quadriceps concussion.
Los Angeles also struggled from 3 points, shooting 32.5% (13 of 40) on Sunday and just 29.1% (37 of 127) for the series.
While the defending champs were clearly hampered Sunday, the second-seeded Suns got a boost from Chris Paul. The veteran played his best game since his shoulder injury in Game 1 and recorded 18 points, nine assists and zero turnovers in 32 minutes.
It's a great performance considering that coach Monty Williams had originally planned to seat Paul for the game.
Jae Crowder took a step forward by scoring 17 points, but his three 3-pointers were a topic of discussion after the contest. After all, he was 2 of 20 from beyond the arc in the previous three games.
Deandre Ayton posted his fourth straight double-double of the series on Sunday after posting 14 points and 17 rebounds. The former No. 1 overall pick is averaging 19.8 and 13.5, respectively, in the series.
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