LeBron James plans to suit up for Saturday’s game against the Celtics. Beyond that, not much is clear as to the reigning Most Valuable Player’s status.
James has been experiencing soreness in his lower back since the preseason, he told reporters on Friday, which has contributed to him feeling uncomfortable at times on the court. During Thursday’s win over the Clippers, James spent stretches out of the game lying on a heat pad near the baseline.
“If I can’t get out of bed, I can’t show up here,” James said, according to ESPN.com. “If I can’t give enough to help us be successful, then I won’t play. That’s the one thing I know I will do, but it wasn’t bad enough [on Thursday] to the point where I couldn’t help.”
If James’ back is affecting his play, it’s not by much. He is averaging 24.3 points, 7.7 assists and 5.5 rebounds per game through six games. Only the rebounding figure is significantly below his career average. However, he is averaging just 0.8 steals and 0.3 blocks per game, each less than half of his career mark.
James is expected to play against the Celtics, but his status remains day-to-day.