Now that superstar big man Anthony Davis has returned to game action for the Los Angeles Lakers, he has fired off a warning to the rest of the league.
Going 1-on-1 with Anthony Davis ahead of tonight's Lakers-Mavs rematch. On the hardest part of his time out injured, how he and Andre Drummond are fitting together and what he thinks of the Lakers' repeat chances even if they end up a low seed: "I'd put us up against anyone." pic.twitter.com/BWTjywELFs
— Rachel Nichols (@Rachel__Nichols) April 24, 2021
“No matter where we fall, we know that we’re capable of still winning a championship,” said Davis. “Injuries played a part this season for us but we always say: it just makes it a lot sweeter at the end, to go through something like this. I’d put us up against anyone. I don’t think no one wants to see us in the first round. I know the type of team that we have and I know what we can do. I think we’re capable of beating anyone in a seven-game series.”
Davis went on the injured list in mid-February due to a calf strain and Achilles tendonosis. He has returned for the team’s last two games, albeit in limited minutes.
The team’s strategy seems to be to gradually ramp up Davis’ playing time to prevent a relapse.
Fellow superstar LeBron James is still out due to a high ankle sprain, but he could be set to return soon.
The Lakers are currently in fifth place in the Western Conference. There is a chance they could fall to sixth place, as they are only 1.5 games ahead of the sixth-place Dallas Mavericks.
A sixth-place finish could set up a very tough first-round playoff matchup against the Los Angeles Clippers or Phoenix Suns, while staying in fifth place would likely result in playing an injury-riddled Denver Nuggets team.
Still, many around the league feel that, if healthy, the Lakers are the favorites to win the NBA championship this summer.