Sources – Growing Optimism LeBron James could return for the Los Angeles Lakers against the Boston Celtics on Friday

Optimism is growing that Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James, who sidelined for two weeks with an abdominal strain, could return against the Boston Celtics on Friday, sources told ESPN.

James has made good progress on his return and meeting the Celtics on Friday (7:30 p.m. ESPN) is emerging as a goal for him to get back on the Lakers lineup.

36-year-old James has started resuming individual workouts in the past few days, Lakers trainer Frank Vogel said on Sunday.

James has missed nine games this season – including two with a sprained ankle – and the Lakers are dying to get him back. The Lakers embark on a five-game trip against the Bucks in Milwaukee on Wednesday.

The Lakers are 8-7 and lost 121-103 to the Chicago Bulls at the Staples Center on Monday.

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