As the Los Angeles Lakers officially begin to prepare for the upcoming NBA Draft and free agency period, no accquistion can be as beneficial as a healthy Anthony Davis.
The eight-time NBA All-Star big man recently worried Lakers fans after he stated that he had not shot a basketball since April 5. This news took the whole basketball world by storm that even LeBron James came to his teammate’s defense with an Instagram post hyping up Davis.
Although Davis has been experiencing declines in his shooting numbers, shooting just 18.6 percent from 3-point range and 71 percent from the free-throw line last season, new Lakers head coach Darvin Ham addressed his unfazed opinion on the matter. In an interview on The Rich Eisen Show, Ham said that he is not concerned about Davis’ offseason regimen:
“I feel the exact opposite. Being a guy that played eight years in the league and had deep playoff runs with teams, there’s that time at the end of the year that you have to take care of your body. All the pounding, the jumping, the running, especially when you’ve dealt with an array of injuries like Anthony has, you have to take time for your body, focus on your body and that’s what he’s doing. Picking up a basketball, that usually happens in the middle of summer. You may do some spot shooting or whatever but in terms of the pounding and the hard workouts and the grueling workouts on the court, that’s usually pushed back toward the middle of the summer. That’s just a general NBA player’s principle just to get that time to get your body back feeling well, to get your body stronger in different areas, to strengthen your mobility or agility. The court will come later. You have to have a functional body in order to be able to improve your game on the court. I think he has his priorities in order. I don’t put too much weight on the firestorm that went on with that comment being made. I know he’s a good place mentally. I know he’s in a good place physically. I just saw him, had dinner with him last night and it was a great, great dinner. It almost lasted three hours, just he and I. Going over some stuff, watching a little film, having a great meal and he’s in a great place and I’m totally comfortable with his process.”
The support Davis has received within the Lakers and the backlash he has faced from fans and members of the media have only strengthened his determination to return back to the AD we all know and love.
Now it is only a waiting game to see if the change the Lakers have made by hiring a player-friendly style of a coach in Ham, and the anticipating upcoming roster transactions, can be the support system Davis needs to get back to being the 27.7 points-per-game scorer that helped lead the team to its 17th championship in 2020.
Quinton Crawford accepts coaching role on Mavericks staff
While the initial plan was for Ham to only bring back Phil Handy and Quinton Crawford as assistants from the previous staff, Crawford threw a curveball at the Lakers’ idea by leaving Los Angeles to join Jason Kidd and the Dallas Mavericks as an assistant coach.
The relationship Crawford and Kidd built since the two sat on the Lakers’ bench to assist former head coach Frank Vogel came to fruition now that the duo are looking to take the Mavericks to greater heights after a trip to the Western Conference Finals in 2021-22.
Now that Ham and Handy are the only current coaches on the Lakers, time will only tell how long it will take to fill out the rest of the staff.
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