LeBron James got good news Wednesday on his injured groin.
But his games-played streak will end anyway.
An MRI exam showed that the four-time NBA MVP merely strained his left groin in the Los Angeles Lakers' victory at Golden State Warriors on Christmas night. James will likely be dealing with soreness for several days, and the Lakers said he won't travel with them for their game Thursday in Sacramento.
From there, he will be listed as day-to-day.
"Dodged a bullet," James tweeted.
Thursday will mark the first time James has sat since the final game of the 2016-17 regular season, which he took off for rest.
James had appeared in 156 consecutive games, going back to the start of the 2017 playoffs with the Cavaliers. His last extended absence due to injury was an eight-game stint to deal with back and knee aches midway through the 2014-15 season.
James is averaging 27.3 points, 8.3 rebounds and 7.1 assists this season, his 16th in the NBA and first with the Lakers.
Holiday ratings rise
The NBA had its most-watched Christmas schedule since 2011, with 10.2 million viewers tuning in for the Lakers' victory over the Warriors.
ESPN says Wednesday that the audience for that game, the first matching the defending champion Warriors and LeBron James since he moved to Los Angeles from Cleveland, was its fifth largest for one on Christmas.
The 2011-12 season began on Christmas after the lockout.
The five games Tuesday averaged 5.8 million viewers, an increase of 14 percent from last year.
Around the league
Toronto Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry, who missed four games with a thigh issue, was out Wednesday against the Miami Heat with a tight back. ... Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton is the first rookie since Blake Griffin (2010) to have three straight games with 20-plus points and 15-plus rebounds. He had 10 rebounds and eight points against Orlando.