Report: Anthony Davis told Lakers he wanted more help at center so he wouldn’t have to play so much 5 during regular season

Peter Dewey
3 Min Read

Los Angeles Lakers superstar Anthony Davis told the Lakers he wanted more support at center so he wouldn’t have to play the position so much during the regular season, according to ESPN’s Dave McMenamin.

“Sources told ESPN that Davis made it clear to the organization he wanted to have more support at center so he wouldn’t have to play so much 5 during the regular season,” McMenamin wrote.

Davis has played the center position a lot over the past two seasons for the Lakers. In the 2021-22 regular season, he played 76 percent of his minutes at center, according to Basketball Reference.

Moreover, in the 2022-23 regular season, he played nearly 100 percent of minutes at center. That’s a major flip from just a few years ago – like the 2020-21 regular season – when he played 91 percent of his minutes at power forward.

The Lakers clearly listened to Davis’ request, adding former lottery pick Jaxson Hayes and veteran big man Christian Wood this offseason.

Wood recently agreed to a two-year deal with the Lakers with a player option for the 2024-25 season. He played with the Dallas Mavericks last season, mainly at the center spot.

Both players should take some pressure off of Davis down low, which could help the Lakers star stay healthy in the regular season. If Davis doesn’t have to bang with centers on the defensive end on a regular basis, it should be beneficial for his long-term health.

In four seasons with the Lakers, Davis has averaged 24.6 points, 10.1 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 2.1 blocks per game while shooting 52.4 percent from the field.

Last season, Davis was an integral part of the team’s success, as the Lakers reached the Western Conference Finals. Despite the team’s slow start to the season, Los Angeles battled back to earn the No. 7 seed in the West.

From there, Davis helped the Lakers down the Memphis Grizzlies and Golden State Warriors in the playoffs.

During the playoff run in the 2022-23 season, Davis averaged 22.6 points, 14.1 rebounds and 3.1 blocks per game. He led the NBA in both rebounds and blocks per game in the playoffs.

With Wood and Hayes now in the fold, the Lakers have a formidable frontcourt rotation that also features Davis, Jarred Vanderbilt and Rui Hachimura ahead of the start of the 2023-24 regular season.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.