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LOS ANGELES – Los Angeles Lakers center JaVale McGee was hospitalized for three days because of pneumonia and was discharged Saturday, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
The 11-year veteran was discharged from UCLA Medical Center after being admitted Thursday with a 104-degree fever following the Lakers’ return from a four-game road trip, sources said.
He was monitored and tended to by the Lakers’ team doctor throughout his stay, sources said.
The 7-footer will be with the team tonight when it hosts the Memphis Grizzlies, but he will not play and is expected to be day-to-day moving forward, sources said.
McGee, 30, has missed the Lakers’ past three games. He was initially out because of flu-like symptoms and then his status was updated to a respiratory infection Friday.
When reached by phone Sunday morning, McGee confirmed his condition but refused to expound on the severity.
“I feel a little better,” McGee told Yahoo Sports. “Surprisingly, I didn’t lose any weight. All I can do is get healthy and get back in shape as soon as possible so that I can contribute towards making us a playoff-contending team. This is such a great organization, and the way we’re battling and the way our young fellas are holding it down with the injuries we’ve endured is incredible. I’m proud of how we pulled off that game against New Orleans [on Friday]. I just can’t wait to get back.”
He began feeling ill before a road game in Houston on Dec. 13, but played through it. He was questionable two days later in Charlotte before playing and producing 19 points, six rebounds and three blocks in 18 minutes in a 128-100 victory.
That was the last game he played.
McGee attempted to suit up the next night at Washington, but was severely dehydrated, and five attempts at administering an IV were unsuccessful because of complications finding a vein, sources said.
On Christmas Day, the Lakers will hit the road to face the defending back-to-back champion Golden State Warriors for the first time this season. McGee played for the Warriors the previous two seasons.
At Oracle Arena on Tuesday, McGee will be presented with his second championship ring.
“Of course, that’s the only thing, the only game I’ve been thinking about while being bedridden is the Christmas Day game,” McGee told Yahoo Sports. “No offense to the other teams, but that’s really important to me. I’ve got to get better for that game. That’s the homecoming, the ring ceremony. It’s really important.”
In 29 games this season, McGee is averaging 11.8 points, 6.7 rebounds and 2.6 blocks. He’s fourth in league in blocks per game and fourth in field-goal percentage at .626.
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