Only Anthony Davis saved the Lakers’ season
There’s a reason the Los Angeles Lakers have so little draft capital.
In 2019, the NBA’s team-building trend is to put as many star players on the roster as possible, assuming talent will elevate the players around them and keep the team an unbeatable contender. enemies for several seasons. Maybe the team will give up on future success, but it’s worth building the 2016-19 Golden State Warriors, the 2015-18 Cleveland Cavaliers, or the 2010-14 Miami Heat.
The Lakers overpaid for Anthony Davis in 2019. Two starting caliber players, three first-round picks and one swap is too much for any player. No single individual, not even in basketball, can occupy such a large gap, now or in the future, in the list. Now LeBron James and Davis… maybe that’s enough.
For the first time since 2020, Davis resembles the player the Lakers believe is worth acquiring at any cost. With James absent for the past nine days, it was Davis’ dominant play that ended the Lakers’ five-game losing streak.
LA has won three games in a row, and in that span Davis has averaged 35 points and 17.3 bounces. He shot 0% from the 3-point line, and no one should care. Davis is doing what he failed to do when James missed time last season, which is playing aggressively.
James missed eight games last November through injury, and that’s when the Lakers’ first season came to an end. They went 3-5 in that span, and Davis’ lack of patience was alarming. He averages 22.6 points per game and 10.5 bounces on 16.8 goals, and the nearly 7-foot-tall player only averages 5.6 free throws per game. In the last three games, he has scored 20 goals, 11.3 free throws and also averaged 5 counter-attacks.
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Davis’ recent activity pops off the screen. He runs around, dashing into the highlands, using those long legs to get past defenders, catch teammates’ misfires and put them back in the net. Davis told ESPN’s Dave McMenamin that James said he is playing like his old self.
That old man was Davis’ version of the New Orleans Pelicans in 2016-17 and 2017-18. That player made 75 appearances in consecutive seasons, averaging 28 points and more than 11 rebounds, and was one of the best defensive players in the league. Davis as a defensive and counter-attacking terror, coupled with his talent for attacking from 17 feet away, and his length make him an ideal player to put on the field with a James occupying the field. ball advantage.
The old Davis – with a lightning 3-pointer – helped lead the Lakers to the 2020 NBA championship, but that guy hasn’t been seen much since February 2021. Along with the Lakers in the hunt. Looking for a final seeded No. 1 spot in the Western Conference, he was sidelined with a calf injury/achilles tendon in 30 games. He will be back before the end of the regular season, but his effectiveness is down.
His presence on the field for most of the season was a must for the Lakers to recover from a poor start to this season and reach the knockout stages. However, the Davis they need is mid-November 2022 Davis, who strengthened the Lakers’ defense and led them to score, not mid-November 2021, who will score 25 points in one matches and still have viewers not paying attention to him on the field for a long time.
A trade that will help the Lakers. Russell Westbrook has also fared better at the end of the year, but for the tank crews, the enticing $40 million-plus soon-to-be expiring contract will become more appealing as the trade deadline draws closer.
The Lakers need some more talent on the roster, but the most profitable source of talent can only come from Davis. If he returns to being the same all-NBA First Team player as before, the Lakers could return to post-season. Otherwise they would be a Lottery team, with no Lottery, no present and no future.