Danny Ainge & other NBA execs - why the fuss over Anthony Davis?
Okay, I see it! I can't leave this alone, but trust me, neither can Danny Ainge. Nothing about Anthony Davis is ordinary, even his growth spurt. The following is a well-thought-out 2014 analysis of why Ainge and many other NBA executives lust after Davis (per BusinessInsider's Tony Manfred):
Anthony Davis Grew 8 Inches In 18 Months In High School, and It Gave Him The Most Unique Skillset... Anthony Davis is one of the only players in the NBA who could realistically be The Best Player In The World one day.
... Davis grew from 6'2" to 6'10" between his sophomore and senior years in high school. He went from a lightly-recruited guard who had one scholarship offer (from Cleveland State) to the best high school player in the country.
As a result of that unusual growth spurt, Davis has the fundamentals and movements of the guard within the body of a center (he's now 6'11" and still growing). He's the ultimate hybrid.
In a new ESPN article, Jordan Brenner had this great description of his unique skillset: "In a league of specialized big men — rim protectors and stretch-4s, elbow facilitators and designated rebounders — Davis embodies virtually every archetype.
"When asked to name Davis' best attribute, Pelicans coach Monty Williams pauses...eventually Williams settles on Davis' ability to run the floor, but he just as easily could have picked the power forward's quickness and reach as a shot-blocker, his rebounding acumen (which will only be aided this season by his newly chiseled shoulders) or the touch and grace he displays in finishing plays near the rim. Plus, Davis can dribble, pass and knock down face-up jumpers, and it won't be long before he displays 3-point range. 'His strength," says one GM, 'is that he has no weakness.'"
Part of the reason Danny is holding onto the future draft picks is the fact that he is always looking for the best deal and wants to time it as perfectly as possible. Davis is transcendent. He is the player every coach and GM dreams about. As stated in the quote above, "His strength is that he has no weakness." He has everything. What other player displays this type of stat line this season:
Those numbers are incredible. And last night in a 123-118 win over the Knicks, The Brow had 48 points, 17 rebounds, four steals and three blocks. He made 17-of-30 on field goals, 2-of-6 on threes and 12-of-15 on freebies. He can be injury-prone, but there are no other weaknesses. He is big, ripped, strong, dominant, mobile and quick. He can roam the court on offense and defense, can now hit from 3-point land and there can be no hack-a-Brow. He is hitting 81.9% on free throws this season. The fuss is justified (per BusinessInsiders' Tony Manford):
Davis is a guard who grew into a dominant big man while maintaining his inherent guard-ness. If he's able to put together all those skills in one package (which looks likely), the rest of the NBA should be terrified.
The Brow even gave away Christmas presents and a new car to a needy family during the holidays. The tweet/video is heartwarming. Is there anything this guy does not do?
Danny Ainge always looks to hook the big fish. This time, the big catch may actually be a Pelican. He got Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen. More recently, he got Al Horford,Gordon Hayward and Kyrie Irving. He is not done. He can not sit still. He tried to catch big ones in Kevin Love and Kevin Durant, but they got away. Catching more than one Kevin apparently wasn't in the cards. So he may try bird hunting. There is not an open season on Pelicans right now that I am aware of, but this off-season (or sooner) Ainge just might bag one.