Perennial All-Star Lebron James hasn’t had a spectacular season in his first with the Los Angeles Lakers. He’s currently missed the most games of his career in a year and is now on a team sitting at .500 towards the end of February. While he may have complained about a lack of support during his time as a Cleveland Cav, he’s finding even less help now. A front office led by Magic Johnson has pulled more tampering fines than perennial all-stars after striking out on Paul GeorgeKawhi Leonard and Anthony Davis.

Now Lebron has even less help. Young star Lonzo Ball will miss most of their playoff push. Ball has been sidelined with an ankle injury since mid-January that he seems to have had an extremely slow recovery from. The injury, diagnosed as a grade 3 ankle sprain, was said to take four to six weeks to recover from. However, as those dates loom closer Ball has been notably absent from even practice courts. If he does return on time for mid-March, he’ll have missed most of a crucial stretch.

A grade 3 sprain typically is the worst of all possible sprains to an ankle. It’s a full tearing of the ligaments. With the injury, an athlete will feel unstable on their joint and won’t be able to support much weight, if any at all. Grade 3 injuries typically take 8 to 12 weeks and the Lakers recovery time frame given appears to be an effort to push Ball back for a late season run.

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The UCLA product missed 30 games last season. Following a lackluster showing for the no. 2 overall pick, he had part of his meniscus removed in the offseason. Currently, there are reports that Ball is dealing with a bone bruise that will only lengthen his recovery time. James, who has made the finals for eight consecutive years, is in serious danger of losing that streak. In the tougher Western conference, he’s now struggling to lift a young team to even the playoffs. For a star at 34 years old who’ll soon decline, things do not look bright. LA must make big moves soon in order to prolong the success of Lebron.

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