Prior to the Los Angeles Lakers’ blowout win over the Houston Rockets, Christian Wood said that he had been waiting for the chance to match up alongside Anthony Davis.
While it was likely meant as a sign of respect, the quotes that circulated made it seem as though Wood was preparing to play a career game against one of the NBA’s premier players. Davis did not make mention of the comments prior to the game, but he did have one of his best performances of the season, leading to natural speculation that Wood’s comments fueled him.
Davis wound up with 27 points on just 12 shots while adding three blocks in just 30 minutes of play. And while Wood actually led the Rockets in scoring with 23, he clearly was not ready defensively to go against Davis.
After the game, Davis was asked about Wood circling this matchup. He was respectful about it, saying he didn’t take it with any sort of offense. “I just go out there and play basketball. I don’t think it was anything crazy,” Davis said.
“I know C. Wood, we played in New Orleans together. He was a guy whose always kind of leaned on me for help in the league. I worked with him when I was in New Orleans on some moves and stuff. I didn’t see. I heard about it but didn’t know if it was true or not. I didn’t look at it any type of way. I just go out there and play basketball, to be honest.”
With the prior history between Wood and Davis, it can be assumed that the young forward was simply excited to play against his former teammate. And while Davis was the best player on the floor for both teams, Wood had himself a solid outing, continuing what has been a career season for him.
The two will likely face off again on Tuesday, depending on the adductor strain that held Davis out of one game already and may have been aggravated Sunday. It will also be the first half of a back-to-back.
Lakers hold James Harden in check after Davis’ comments on team defense
Following a loss to the San Antonio Spurs — only L.A.’s third of the season — Davis sounded off on the lack of defensive effort. He sat out the following game against the Chicago Bulls, meaning his first game back after those comments was the win against the Rockets.
In his return the Lakers looked as though they had new life defensively. They held James Harden, one of the best scorers of the modern era, to just 20 points on 2-of-8 from 3 despite him playing 38 minutes.
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