Report: There was sentiment in Lakers front office last season that A.D. didn’t look like franchise player team once thought he was

Orel Dizon
3 Min Read

When the Los Angeles Lakers brought in Anthony Davis in the 2019 offseason, they were probably hoping that the star big man would eventually emerge as their franchise player, especially considering LeBron James’ age.

For a time, it seemed like he could play the part, as he helped the Lakers win it all in the 2019-20 season. However, according to Dave McMenamin of ESPN, there was reportedly a sentiment within the organization last season that the eight-time All-Star did not look like the franchise player L.A. once thought he was.

“Apart from missing more games that he played in for the Lakers the last two seasons, there was a sentiment within the team’s front office last season that Davis didn’t look like the franchise player they thought they had coming off the 2020 championship, sources said,” wrote McMenamin.

Davis is undoubtedly one of the most talented big men in the NBA. He is a versatile scoring threat and holds a career average of 23.8 points per game. The University of Kentucky product is also a defensive force, recording 2.3 blocks and 1.4 steals per contest through 10 years in the league.

The former No. 1 overall pick has been named to the All-NBA First Team four times, and he has earned All-Defensive honors four times. In addition, he was part of the NBA’s 75th Anniversary Team, which came as a surprise to some people.

Unfortunately, injuries have caused him to miss a significant number of games throughout his career. Davis played in a combined 76 contests over the past two seasons. His lack of availability is definitely a major cause for concern for the Lakers organization.

During Davis’ absences, James has often been asked to carry a heavier load than the franchise intended for him to bear.

The 37-year-old has answered the call in an impressive manner. Last season, which happened to be his 19th in the league, James put up 30.3 points, 8.2 rebounds and 6.2 assists per game. However, the lack of help has been evident.

Despite James’ gargantuan efforts, L.A. failed to make the playoffs in the 2021-22 campaign. The team finished with a 33-49 record, good for 11th in the Western Conference.

This season, the Lakers’ success may hinge on Davis’ ability to stay on the court.

The team will open its season on Oct. 18 when it faces the Golden State Warriors on the road.

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