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Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James is expected to miss back-to-back games against the LA Clippers and Portland Trail Blazers on Thursday and Friday to rest his injured right ankle, sources told ESPN.

It is possible James could miss more games, sources said, as he works through discomfort in the ankle that kept him out six weeks until a two-game return that saw home losses to Toronto and Sacramento over the weekend.

James and the Lakers will continue to evaluate the injury and will proceed cautiously as the Lakers ramp up for the postseason, sources said.

James has experienced some trouble making hard cuts and exploding since his return from six weeks on the sideline with the injury, sources said.

James was held out of the final 6 minutes, 42 seconds of Sunday’s game against the Raptors after experiencing soreness in the ankle and did not play Monday against the Denver Nuggets.

The Lakers (37-28) are tied with Dallas for the fifth spot in the Western Conference — with the Mavericks owning the tiebreaker — and a full game ahead of seventh-place Portland with four games against the Clippers, Blazers, Suns and Knicks in the next week. The Lakers are trying to avoid landing in the play-in tournament for seeds No. 7 to No. 10.


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