James was wounded during the Lakers’ 127-101 victory over two-time defending NBA champion Golden State on xmas when he awakened while taking a loose ball.

An MRI revealed that James side stepped serious accident, but he’d sustain a substantial left groin strain and the Lakers are preparing for him to miss several matches, league sources told ESPN’s Brian Windhorst and Adrian Wojnarowski. The Lakers are calling James’ lack”daily,” but sources tell ESPN that there’s actually a healing process that should occur before James can return to the lineup.

“It is one of the things we want to make sure he is healthy before we get him out there,” coach Luke Walton said Thursday. “that may be an injury in which you come back too early you re-injure it and you’re outside more. We’ll be cautious and careful if he starts playing .”

James, who remained in Los Angeles while his teammates flew into Sacramento, has played in every game since the finale of this 2016-17 regular season, when he awakened to break. His past protracted absence due to trauma was an eight-game stint to address back and knee pains mid way throughout the 2014-15 season.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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