Back in October, while browsing through one of my NBA Card groups on Facebook, I came across a card of Anthony Davis made out of glass that was for sale. It was an interesting card, so I checked the comments to see what people were saying about it. Then I came across this comment:
“Yan ang card na bagay kay AD. Pareho silang gawa sa glass. Lugi Lakers sa trade.”
That comment really triggered me. But it wasn’t just that one guy. Everyone was so ready to diss the Lakers.
Granted, it was easy to bash the Lakers and Davis back when the season first started. The Lakers were floundering at the bottom of the standings with Davis struggling to get his offense going. But the way they talked about Davis was like he was Karl-Anthony Towns or Kristaps Porzingis, guys who haven’t proven anything yet.
This was Anthony freaking Davis. He’s not just an All-Star. He’s not just a superstar. He’s a franchise player. A champion. He’s shown that he can dominate anyone multiple times in his career.
He was dominant before joining LeBron James. Remember back in 2018 when he powered the sixth-seeded New Orleans Pelicans to an upset of the third-seeded Portland Trail Blazers? Let me refresh your memory.
Davis averaged 33 points, nearly 12 rebounds, three blocks, and 60 percent shooting in that series. The Blazers couldn’t do anything to slow him down on offense or get past him on defense.
Davis also showed he was dominant alongside LeBron. The Brow was the best Laker during the 2020 playoffs before the King decided to close it out in the finals. AD averaged 27.7 points, 9.7 rebounds, and 3.5 assists in the Lakers’ run in the bubble. That included a 43-point masterpiece against the Blazers in Round 1 and dropping 31 points per game on Nikola Jokic in the Western Conference Finals.
Can’t dispute how good he is? That’s when haters go to their old reliable.
The biggest knock on Davis is that he was—as the commenter said—made out of glass. While it’s true that he’s missed a ton of games in his career, he’s been more available than a lot of other superstars heading into this season.
Yet, those guys don’t get the type of hate Davis gets for missing games.
In fact, Davis shows up when it matters most. During the 2020 NBA Finals, he played through an undisclosed ankle injury to help his team win the championship. The following year, he played through a groin injury against the Phoenix Suns to keep LA’s season alive. But, sure, call him “Street Clothes” because it’s the trendy thing to do.
Now, all the Davis haters are quiet and have nothing to say.
Davis has put the Lakers on his back and has led them to an 8-2 record in their last 10 games. The 2018 and 2020 versions of AD have nothing on this beast who’s been destroying teams.
Lakers have won 8 of their last 10 games.— StatMuse (@statmuse) December 5, 2022
AD in that span:
— 35.3 PPG
— 15.6 RPG
— 2.9 BPG
— 65/46/88% pic.twitter.com/aX7B1xGjVs
His hot streak started with four straight 30-point games with James out due to injury. His last two games have just been incredible.
Davis faced off against Giannis Antetokounmpo—a player many claim is the best in the world—and outplayed the Greek Freak. Davis outscored (44 to 40) and outrebounded (10 to 7) Antetokounmpo. More importantly, he came up with the two huge plays down the stretch to lead the Lakers to a huge win against a top East team.
He followed that up with an absolutely insane 55-point, 17-rebound, 3-block performance against the Washington Wizards.
The Wizards tried everything that they possibly could to get back in the game. But Davis wouldn’t let them. He weathered the Wizards’ runs by stifling their attempts at the rim and bulldozing players in the paint.
There’s also no going into the old “Street Clothes” bit.
Davis has only missed two games this season. Joel Embiid has missed eight games, while Antetokounmpo has missed four. Davis’ 20 games played actually trails the 21 games played by Kawhi Leonard and Paul George… combined.
It’s incredibly satisfying to watch Davis silence all his haters.
I never lost my faith in AD. I knew that the Lakers made the right move trading for him, even if it cost them all those draft picks and their young core. When there’s a chance to get a generational talent like Davis, you have to make that move. And make no mistake, Davis is a once-in-a-lifetime player. He’s proven it before and he’s proving it again now.
Hindi na-lugi yung Lakers kay AD.