There is no singular person on the Los Angeles Lakers who can replace what the team lost when Anthony Davis went down to injury. But without a doubt, the player who is trying his best and stepping up in a major way has been Thomas Bryant.
Bryant may have started the year injured, but he has quickly become a major part of this team and will undoubtedly remain in the rotation even when Davis returns to the lineup. In 10 games as a starter, Bryant is averaging 14.1 points and 8.5 rebounds while bringing his never-ending intensity and energy to the floor.
Of course, when replacing a player like Davis in the starting lineup, many players could worry about trying to replace everything that he does. But Thomas Bryant is simply focused on what he does and doing so to the best of his ability via Spectrum SportsNet:
“It’s not too difficult. We’re all part of the same team, we all have different ways that we like to play and I just try to bring as much as I can to the table and help my team out as much as I can. AD to me is a first-ballot Hall of Famer right there and to fill his shoes is very, very, very difficult, but I try to bring what I can to the table. My intensity, my rebounding ability, and being open and finishing when I can out there. Making myself available for my teammates, and getting my teammates open as well.”
It’s just not possible for Bryant to do what Davis does, especially defensively, so instead of worrying about that, Bryant is making the biggest impact he can in the best way he knows how. His energy is infectious, and it is basically impossible for a player not to give everything they can when Davis is always playing as hard as he can.
His ability to finish around the rim and stretch the floor makes him a unique offensive weapon, and the Lakers’ playmakers have been great about finding him around the rim. There is no replacing Anthony Davis, but Thomas Bryant simply being himself has done a lot to help the Lakers hold down the fort as best they can.
Thomas Bryant says Lakers can’t take LeBron James’ greatness for granted
Another way for the Lakers to stay afloat without Davis is for LeBron James to continue to put forth the unbelievable performances he has been doing. On his 38th birthday, LeBron dropped 47 points, 10 rebounds, and nine assists to get the Lakers a win, and Thomas Bryant wants to make sure people understand what they are witnessing.
Bryant made note of LeBron’s even-keeled demeanor and communication throughout the game, but most importantly, noted how important it is to not take that level of greatness for granted.