While the cliche says to be careful what you wish for, Anthony Davis‘ 2019-20 NBA campaign has been a great success. After spending seven seasons in New Orleans, the big man got his wish and joined a contender; now, he’s taking the court alongside LeBron James and sitting atop the Western Conference standings with the Los Angeles Lakers.
Although requesting a trade from the only professional team can’t be easy, Anthony Davis is probably glad that he bit the bullet. On a personal level, his move to Los Angeles has already paid off in spades.
Anthony Davis’ move to Hollywood
After shining on the AAU circuit and at the University of Kentucky, Anthony Davis entered the 2012 NBA draft. He landed with the New Orleans Hornets and promptly established himself as a star.
Despite battling through some knee and shoulder issues, Davis averaged 13.5 points per outing and finished second in Rookie of the Year voting. From there, he only improved on both ends of the floor. While the big man helped make the newly rebranded Pelicans a playoff team, he wasn’t happy with cameo appearances; Davis wanted a shot at the title.
Midway through last season, Davis requested a trade to a contender; while the Pelicans waited until the end of the season to hammer out a deal, the big man eventually got his wish. He teamed up with LeBron James in Los Angeles and hasn’t looked back.
Anthony Davis’ move to the Los Angeles Lakers is already paying off
While it goes without saying that it’s easy to succeed alongside LeBron James, Anthony Davis has been thriving in Los Angeles.
On a statistical level, the forward is averaging 26.7 points, 9.4 rebounds, 3.1 assists, and 2.5 blocks per game; while those might not be career-highs, it’s still an impressive stat line. Davis has also formed a relationship with James both on and off the court. Together, the two stars have the Lakers sitting atop the Western Conference standings.
2019-20 is also the most successful campaign Davis has ever been a part of, at least from a pure wins and losses perspective. During his time in the Big Easy, Davis never won more than 48 games in a single regular season; the Lakers have already piled up 49 victories with 20 games left on the calendar.
Regular seasons are nice, but the Los Angeles Lakers have bigger fish to fry
When he left New Orleans, Anthony Davis wanted to join a team where he could compete for NBA championships. While the Los Angeles Lakers’ regular season proves he’s in the right place, the ultimate prize is still a ways away.
While 538 currently gives the Lakers the best chance at claiming the title, the road to the Larry O’Brien Trophy won’t be easy. In the Western Conference alone, Davis and his teammates will have to face at least the Clippers; if they make it to the Finals, they’ll probably have to outduel Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks. The regular season has proven that the Lakers can beat both of those clubs on any given night, but the playoffs can be a grind for even the most talented team.
Whether you’re judging by wins and losses or individual statistics, Anthony Davis is having a successful first season in Los Angeles. If the Lakers can win the NBA championship, though, even better.