LA Lakers fans are fearing the worst after Anthony Davis went down injured before the Phoenix Suns levelled their series with a 100-92 victory in Game 4.
Deandre Ayton had 14 points and 17 rebounds for the second-seeded Suns, who took advantage of Davis' absence in the second half with a groin injury to reclaim home-court advantage in the series after two straight losses.
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Davis scored six points on 2-for-9 shooting in the first half, but didn’t return after half-time.
The superstar big man scored 34 points in each of the Lakers’ two victories in the series, but he hyperextended his leg in Game 3 and appeared to aggravate his injury woes in the second quarter of Game 4.
David stayed down in pain after falling awkwardly and grabbing his leg after a layup attempt defended by Jae Crowder.
Davis didn't join the Lakers on the sideline after half-time as medical staff continued to evaluate his injury. The team ruled him out early in the third quarter.
Davis was initially questionable to play on Sunday after spraining his left knee in Game 3.
The injury is the latest in a difficult season for Davis, who missed 36 of the Lakers' 72 regular-season games. He missed most of that time with tendonosis in his right Achilles tendon that he aggravated in a February game against the Denver Nuggets.
His status for the remainder of the series isn't initially clear, but Lakers fans aren't overly confident.
Phoenix Suns level series with Lakers at 2-2
Chris Paul had 18 points and nine assists, while Devin Booker and Crowder added 17 points apiece as the Suns levelled the series 2-2.
LeBron James had 25 points and 12 rebounds for the Lakers, who fell too far behind in the third quarter while Davis was being evaluated in the locker room.
Before a last-minute surge, the Lakers struggled in the absence of starters Davis and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, who injured his knee in Game 3.
Game 5 is Tuesday night (local time) in Phoenix.
On Sunday, the Suns sharply improved their effort against the defending NBA champions and showed solid poise.
Phoenix collectively has little experience in the postseason, but Paul excelled again on the big stage in his first playoff run with his new team.
Paul, largely a non-factor in Game 3, ignored his injured shoulder and contributed 12 points and all his assists in the second half.
Phoenix dominated the third quarter and hung on for the franchise's first road playoff victory in over 11 years.
The Suns made a 32-15 run starting shortly before half-time and encompassing the whole third, during which they held the Lakers to 15 points on 3-for-16 shooting.
The Suns led by 18 with less than nine minutes to play, but James led a 19-8 run and trimmed the lead to 95-88 with 2:40 left.
Phoenix hung on when Paul hung in the air to steal a pass with 1:59 to play before Crowder hit an uncontested 3-pointer in front of the Suns' bench with 1:23 left to seal it.
with Associated Press
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