Mathieu walked into a Chiefs locker room that had lost some of its veteran defensive players and longtime voices in Berry and linebacker Justin Houston.

“I truly feel like they brought me here, obviously, to make plays, but to kind of set the tempo and set the energy in the building,” Mathieu said. “I’ve always been a team guy. I feel I can go into any locker room and fit in for the most part, really relate to the most of the guys in the locker room. That’s all I tried to do here is come in, play my role, be a veteran and be a leader on the defensive side and just try my best to kind of bring the team together and keep the team together whether things are going good or bad.

Fede Valverde gives them something different in midfield, Ferland Mendy does too in defense: of his 10 starts, seven have ended with clean sheets. Courtois is Courtois again, the invisible man once permeable, now impervious. Raphael Varane defending with pace and confidence. Luka Modric and Toni Kroos, a portrait of past malaise, are back. Hazard has hardly been seen yet due to injuries, but he will be. He boarded the plan on Tuesday, joining a team that is not perfect, especially without Karim Benzema and Gareth Bale, but which is… something.

Maybe this is the start, maybe fiitg.com this is Zidane’s team again. You know, the one that wins.

Davis was injured when he fell awkwardly while trying to block the shot of New York’s Julius Randle. Davis pounded the court in obvious pain after his hard landing, and then clutched his backside while he stayed down on the floor, surrounded by Lakers medical personnel for several minutes in front of a hushed crowd at Staples Center.

Davis eventually rose with help from his teammates, and he walked to the Lakers’ dressing room slowly, but under his own power. After the initial shock of the fall wore off, Davis was able to walk more in the player tunnel but was ultimately carted out of the arena at the end of the night to undergo further testing.

Davis’ agent, Rich Paul, emerged from the Lakers’ locker room after the injury and said X-rays on Davis’ back were negative, but the superstar is feeling sore. The Lakers described the injury as a bruised sacrum — the lower part of the custom football jerseys spine near the tailbone.

“We hope that he’ll be fine, which we believe he’ll be fine,” LeBron James said. “Tough night for us.”

Davis was scheduled to undergo a MRI on Tuesday night, and he is expected to miss the upcoming trip in Dallas and Oklahoma City to rehab, a league source told ESPN.

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