Los Angeles Lakers fans collectively held their breaths when Anthony Davis went down with a turned ankle on Friday night against the Minnesota Timberwolves. But Davis stayed in and dominated Minnesota with 38 points and 17 rebounds and that play continued on Sunday in Houston.
Davis was once again dominant, finishing with 40 points and nine rebounds in a 25-point Lakers win over the Rockets as the team has now won six of their last seven games. Davis has scored at least 27 points in the last five Lakers wins and at least 37 in the last four.
And that is due in large part to Davis’ mindset when he steps out on the floor. After the Rockets victory, Davis spoke with Mike Trudell of Spectrum SportsNet about his focus on being aggressive and dominating every possession:
“Just having fun playing the game. I know what’s at stake for us and trying to do my part for us as one of the leaders of the team. My job is to go out there and to make everybody else job easier with my scoring, defense and rebounding. The more aggressive I am coming out, the game opens up for everyone else on the team and that’s what I’m trying to do, come out with an aggressive mindset and try to dominate each possession.”
Thanks to this excellent recent stretch, the Lakers now find themselves well within striking distance of pushing out of the Play-In Tournament completely. But Davis insists that the team must simply keep their minds on the things that they control:
“Control what we control. Every time we step on the floor we control our own destiny. We go out and win basketball games and let the rest take care of itself. We can’t control what other teams do, but we can control us going out playing with a sense of urgency, playing with effort, playing with energy and collective basketball wins. The more we do that, the better chance we have of putting ourselves in the position not to be in the Play-In Tournament.”
If Davis and the Lakers can continue to play at this level, they will be an extremely difficult matchup for any team in the Western Conference. The momentum is building and there is a belief in that locker room that these Lakers can play with anyone in the league:
“Yeah, we’re getting greedy. We’re not satisfied. We’re coming in doing what we’re supposed to do. We think we can come in and play against any team, compete against any team. No matter if they’re a playoff team, a team that’s in a position just like us to fight for a playoff spot or a team who’s out here just having fun playing until the season is over. We got to come out and do what we’re supposed to do as a unit and it’s building our momentum and chemistry.”
With just four games remaining in the regular season, the Lakers are putting the rest of the NBA on notice to watch out. Anthony Davis playing at this level gives L.A. a chance against anyone.
Anthony Davis believes Lakers have ‘everything we need’ to make a playoff run
The confidence of the Lakers is at a high for this season and Davis is leading that charge. Following a recent victory, Davis spoke about his belief that this Lakers team has everything they need to make a run in the playoffs.
With a high-level superstar duo, capable shooters and creators, and great defensive players as well, it is hard to argue with Davis’ assessment.
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