Lakers to limit LeBron James for rest of season with playoffs a long shot

March 7, 2019

This isn’t the way most thought LeBron James’ first season with the Los Angeles Lakers would end.

With the playoffs now a long shot, the Lakers will put James on a minutes restriction and could sit him out on the back end of back-to-backs for the rest of the season, Yahoo Sports reported Thursday.

The Lakers are 6 1/2 games out of a playoff spot in the Western Conference, trailing the Los Angeles Clippers for the eighth seed.

BREAKING: @ChrisBHaynes reports Lakers will put LeBron on a minutes restriction and likely won’t let him play back-to-backs. pic.twitter.com/02jI7UYIsp Yahoo Sports (@YahooSports) March 7, 2019

The Lakers have collapsed since late December. Once the fourth seed, James pulled his groin on Christmas and missed the next 18 games and the Lakers went 6-12 in that span.

Even after James’ return from injury, Los Angeles has struggled. The team was unable to pull off a trade for New Orleans Pelicans star Anthony Davis last month, and some have theorized that drama affected the team’s chemistry.

James signed a four-year, $153 million deal with the Lakers last summer.

The 34-year-old has not missed the playoffs since 2005 and is coming off a streak in which he made the last eight NBA finals.