It was a block party at Staples Center as the Los Angeles Lakers recorded a season-high 20 blocks en route to a 106-99 win over the Detroit Pistons.
Despite outscoring them 66-32 in points in the paint, the team’s aggressiveness contesting shots allowed Detroit to march to the free-throw line where they converted on 30 of their 35 attempts, keeping the game close in the second half.
Although the Pistons looked as though they were about to steal a win, Howard’s late block and offensive rebound was enough to keep them at a bay and help the Lakers preserve the win. Davis discussed playing alongside the other bigs and team’s defensive performance.
“It’s good because it kind of keeps me on the perimeter guarding the stretch fours and we know we have another line of protection if I’m out on the perimeter. So them guys did a great job of protecting the paint as well and our guards too. Our guards do a great job of not fouling and letting us come over the top with the blocks. We all on a string when it comes to defense and if we keep playing that way we’re a tough team to beat,” Davis explained.
Davis has done nothing but preach the importance of defense throughout the 2019-20 NBA season and he showed out against the Pistons on that end, constantly rotating over to challenge shots and shutting down driving lanes along the perimeter. He has clearly established himself as the frontrunner for the 2019-20 NBA Defensive Player of the Year award and this game should serve as another strong case in his favor.
Aside from Davis, McGee and Howard also showed they can be a collective force on any given night as the two centers provided the perfect complement on the backend. Head coach Frank Vogel stated earlier in the season that he believes the Lakers are getting All-Star production from the big men tandem and their performance was a perfect example of that.
While the game was closer than it should have been, Vogel and the rest of the coaching staff have to be happy with the result and it should carry over when they play the struggling New York Knicks next.