The LeBron James-Anthony Davis pairing has been everything and more the Los Angeles Lakers could have asked for when they completed a trade with the New Orleans Pelicans.
Davis is a generational talent who has transformed the Lakers on both ends of the floor and has the franchise on the doorstep of its 17th NBA championship. Next to James, Davis has taken his game to new heights and it has been on full display during the 2020 NBA Playoffs.
Although this marked Davis’ first time in the Western Conference Finals and NBA Finals, he has continued to deliver and bounce back from letdown performances. James has often had to carry the load for his teams come postseason time, but Davis has eased that burden and appears poised to elevate himself even further.
During a recent appearance on Spectrum SportsNet, James believes the sky is the limit for Davis:
“Just to see what he’s able to do out on the floor both offensively and defensively, he has no weaknesses. It’s just a luxury for not only myself but for our team. We’re lucky to have such a talented person and what he brings to the floor every night.
“I don’t know what else to say. He can go inside, he can go outside, he makes his free throws, defends at a high level and so on and so on. And he’s still only 27 years old, which is incredible. He’s just scratching the surface himself.”
At 35 years old, this was widely considered James’ best opportunity to capture his fourth ring. For Davis, he raved about his first season with the Lakers going exactly how he envisioned and now he looks to put the finishing touches on it.
Davis realizes importance of defense in playoffs
An offense featuring Davis and James would scare any team, but it has been the Lakers’ defense that carried them through the postseason.
Los Angeles faced hot teams like the Portland Trail Blazers and Houston Rockets, but were able to slow them down and simply dominate them in the latter portions of their series.
“You hear it all the time, but defense wins championships,” Davis said. “In order for you to close out a series against a high-powered offensive team like Houston, who is able to basically score whenever they want — especially with the three ball — you’ve got to be able to lock in to your game plan on defense and get stops.
“That’s been the main thing that I’ve learned. No matter how you play offensively, you’ve got to be able to execute defensively what you go over.
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