David Chao, MD: Should The Lakers Have Let Anthony Davis Play?

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With any injury, the big picture needs to be considered. A groin strain, even minor, is never going to completely heal in a few days. Yet, I have no criticism of the Lakers’ decision to play Anthony Davis.

This was an elimination game. His team needed him. No question he was far from 100%, but there was no risk of permanent damage. Sure, the groin strain could have gotten worse, but there was little chance of further injury to the point of needing surgery and no chance any aggravation would affect the upcoming season.

There has been lots of criticism of the Lakers’ medical staff lately. A few days ago, Charles Barkley called AD “street clothes” because he always seems to be sidelined by injury. This time, at halftime, Sir Charles called out the Lakers’ medical staff for allowing Davis to play.

Predictably, Davis left the game early, and his team was down big in the first quarter. One can’t blame Davis or the Lakers for trying. It seemed clear that, without AD, the Lakers were done anyway. In the end, his groin is no worse for the wear. 

There is no reason to point fingers. As expected, Chris Paul’s shoulder re-injury would cause less of a problem than Davis’ groin. The Lakers’ backs were against the wall, and in the end, they tried but were eliminated.

Here’s some of the Twitter reaction. You can see people had mixed opinions on the situation:








Written by Dr. David Chao

David Chao, MD -- known digitally as Pro Football Doc -- is an expert contributor for Outkick. Chao spent 17 seasons as the team doctor for the San Diego Chargers (1997-2013) and is part of the medical team at OASIS in San Diego where he treats and specializes in orthopedic sports injuries, working with high-profile professional athletes from the NFL, NBA, and MLB.


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