Ed Davis’ Lakers Introductory Press Conference

Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak officially introduced Ed Davis as a member of the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday. Wearing number 21, Davis discussed what he feels he can bring to next years team and what he’s learned from playing behind both Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol in Memphis. Check out our transcription of his press conference below.

Mitch Kupchak’s opening remarks:

“We’re working on completion of our roster, and we feel we’ve made significant improvements and changes and we’re happy to add a young player with a very promising future, who’s going to continue to work and develop in this league in Ed Davis.”

Ed Davis on making his way to the Lakers:

“Obviously, it’s a great organization, franchise, a lot of history here, young team, I think there’s an opportunity where I can play and help this team win.”

Davis on fitting in with the rotation:

“I think I can play both positions, the four and the five. I think all the players here are different players and we all compliment each other in different ways.”

On talking to other Lakers:

“(Xavier) Henry’s been here a lot, so I’ve seen him the last couple of days. I saw Nick Young, I think the day he signed. Talked to Kobe over the phone. Couple things I talks to him over the phone, keep it private.”

On choosing jersey number 21 (was unable to have number 32, since it is retired):

“Obviously I couldn’t have 32, it’s gone. That (21) was my number in high school my ninth grade year, so just picked it back up.”

On whether or not he felt he wasn’t given a good enough opportunity in Memphis and whether that prompted decision to come to Lakers:

“Obviously the minutes [were] tough there, playing behind Marc and Z (Randolph), and it was up and down, but it was tough there and I feel there’s a better opportunity here.”

On what he brings to the table:

“Keep working everyday, what I bring – athleticism, defend, run the floor, block shots, rebound, all the little things.”

Any regrets on not taking a potentially more lucrative deal last summer?

“No regrets at all, everything happens for a reason. Not trying to sound cliché, but just looking forward to this opportunity here with this great franchise and just being able to contribute every night.”

On whether the Lakers have given him a sense that he’s going to get a decent amount of playing time?

“Not at all. I think it’s tough to say that without a coach, you know? But just going to work in training camp and earn everything.”

On playing behind Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol in Memphis:

“It was great playing behind both of them, just learning everyday in practice and games, just seeing how they score easy, and Marc just picking his brain on the defensive end. He was Defensive Player of the Year two years ago. Z-Bo, just all the things that coaches can’t really teach you, the stuff that he does, all the intangibles that he has. Just learning from him every night, helped me out a lot.”

On challenges with playing for so many different coaches:

“This is going to be my fifth coach this year. But, I think the NBA game is pretty much the same, using the same terms, but just figuring out what the coaches like every year. They all have their own schemes and stuff like that.”

On what he’s learned over his past four years in the league:

“I feel these past four years I got a lot stronger, grew a lot mentally just understanding the game because it is a big leap from the college to the pros. I’m just going to keep working everyday and just continue to build my game and get better.”

On how he viewed last year’s Lakers defense:

“It starts with a defensive mindset at first, that we’re going to shut people down and not try to outscore them. I think that’s the number one thing, to have that mindset.”

On how he can help the defense:

“I think that’s something that I can rely on every night is defense and protecting the rim, whether that might be hard fouls or just being there at the right time, taking the charge, getting blocks, altering shots and things like that.”

On potential of making Los Angeles his longterm home:

“I’d love to.”

On Julius Randle:

“I think he’s going to be a real good player in this league, kind of remind me of Z-Bo a little bit, but put it on the floor a little better than Z-Bo.

VIDEO: One-On-One With Ed Davis

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