The Los Angeles Lakers have a long line of successful and dominant big men who have played for them, beginning of course with George Mikan, who starred for the team during their time in Minneapolis.
There has also been Wilt Chamerblain, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Shaquille O’Neal, Pau Gasol and now Anthony Davis is carrying the proverbial torch. Like with Chamberlain, Abdul-Jabbar and Gasol, the Lakers acquired Davis via trade.
Davis joined forces with good friend LeBron James and together arguably one of the NBA’s best duos led the Lakers to the best record in the Western Conference before the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic brought the league to a grinding halt.
It’s sent fans, current and former players searching for means to fill the void left by the NBA suspending its 2019-20 season indefinitely and for Abdul-Jabbar that entailed answering questions on Twitter as he re-watched his NBA debut with the Milwaukee Bucks.
One of the topics Abdul-Jabbar was asked about is what current NBA player best resembles him, which led to the six-time champion explaining why he believes it’s Davis:
Anthony Davis is the player that I mostly resemble but I never shot 3 pointers like he does.. However all other aspects of his game are similar to mine https://t.co/5sRO6fIFIY
— Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (@kaj33) March 24, 2020
Already regarded as one of the game’s best young players, particularly amongst big men, Davis has further grown his reputation since joining the Lakers. He was in the early MVP discussion and has long been a frontrunner for Defensive Player of the Year.
Davis has yet to match or surpass the career-high marks Abdul-Jabbar posted in rebounds (16.9) and blocked shots (4.1), both of which came in 1975-76, but he has been a defensive force in his own right and key to the Lakers’ schemes.
And though Davis made it clear at his introductory press conference that playing center on a full-time basis was not something he was keen on, he would when necessary. Sure enough, Davis has anchored small-ball lineups on several occasions this season.
Offensively, Davis — and no player for that matter — has a move or shot as unstoppable as Abdul-Jabbar’s skyhook. However, Davis is a threat down on the block and the perimeter, and as the Lakers legend noted, adept at shooting from behind the arc to fit the modern NBA.
Davis’ 33.5% 3-point shooting is the second-best clip of his career.