LeBron James eyeing playoffs after making Lakers return

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He showed little rustiness despite the longest absence of his 16-year career as he played 40 minutes, grabbed 14 rebounds, delivered nine assists and scored the go-ahead basket with 1min 15sec left.

James said he is at "80 percent" fitness and will see how he feels in the morning when he wakes up.

As good as Davis is, there are not many National Basketball Association teams that are going to go all-in on Davis knowing that he could potentially be just a one-year rental. I'm looking forward to seeing how I feel tomorrow.

Brandon Ingram (19 points) and Rajon Rondo (14 points, 13 assists) also stood out for the winners. "I told our coaches then, he's in".

James' return couldn't have come at a better time for the Lakers.

The Lakers could be even more short-handed for their hallway series against the Clippers, with both Kyle Kuzma (hip) and Josh Hart (knee) listed as questionable; Kuzma, however, reported improvement.

The Lakers are still in the playoff hunt, LeBron James says, despite a miserable run during his absence with a strained groin.

Lou Williams scored 24 points off the bench to lead the Clippers, who had won 22 of their previous 25 matchups against the Lakers.

The Lakers have gone 6-11 with James sidelined, falling from the No. 4 spot in the Western Conference standings to two games behind the Clippers for No. 8. The losing skid dropped them to the 9th seed from the 4th seed.

"It just felt great to get back out there", he said.

He added: "This is where I can shut out everything, be out there with my guys, command my guys, and get a win on the road". The Clippers will be without starters Danilo Gallinari and Avery Bradley, as well as Luch Mbah a Moute.

Fortunately for them, Lance Stephenson continued to make timely shots and finished with 20 points while tying a career-high with five 3-pointers.

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