"He wants to play," Walton said, ahead of the Lakers 130-102 road win over the New Orleans Pelicans on Sunday. "My understanding from the medical staff, they finally said, 'Look, it's just not worth it anymore. Let's make sure you have a healthy summer.' So that's the decision that was made, and we'll move forward without him on the floor for the final six."
He was initially considered day-to-day and tweeted that he "dodged a bullet" after a preliminary MRI. However, the day-to-day recovery timeline became one to two weeks, which eventually became five full weeks without basketball — after a slight tear in the groin was discovered.
James, according to sources, rehabbed four to five hours per day through strength and agilityexercises while he was sidelined and even took naps in oxygen chambers to try to aid in the recovery process.
On March 23, physical therapist Karen Joubert shed light on the severity of James' groin injury by posting and then deleting (h/t Complex Sports) an Instagram photo. The caption read in part:
3月23日，理疗师凯伦·朱伯特在Instagram上发布了一张透露詹姆斯腹股沟伤势严重程度的照片，随后立即将其删除（h/t Complex Sports）。部分配文如下：
"I want you all to know how bad his injury was and is, the pain he endured. Along with his amazing trainer, Mike Mancias, he was on the court in 6 weeks, it should have been 6 months. Unselfishly, he endured pain, pain, pain. He did not want to let the Lakers down, the fans down."
"You've got to understand I've never been injured before like that," he said. "The most I've ever sat out was two weeks, I broke my wrist back in high school as a junior. I didn't come here to sit on the bench, I love clothes, I love suits but I didn't come here to put on a suit every day. I came here to put on a jersey and some shorts. ”
"That's what I came here to do and lead a team the best way I know how so that's the frustration part when you see your team struggle. You know how much you can help them but you can't do anything in a suit and tie so you know that's where the negativity starts to creep into the mind."