Los Angeles Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka is confident that Anthony Davis will bounce back in the upcoming season after two straight injury-plagued campaigns.
Pelinka spoke during a Lakers summer league game, noting that Davis is already intensely focused on making positive strides.
“He’s bought in, and I think he’s quietly put together one of the biggest offseasons of his career,” Pelinka said. “You can just tell. He’s got a very serious tone about him. Last year didn’t unfold the way that any of us wanted, and I think everyone’s gonna come back with a chip on our shoulder, and A.D.’s gonna lead us with that. I think he’s working hard. I know he’s working really hard on his body.”
Coming off the franchise’s first NBA title in a decade in 2020, Davis and the Lakers were thriving during the 2020-21 campaign until the big man went down with an injury.
Davis’ struggles to stay healthy led to the Lakers making a quick playoff exit. Then, the Lakers’ initially promising 2021-22 season fell apart, with Davis seeing action in just 40 games.
His health issues were a key factor in the Lakers not even reaching the postseason. It also led to criticism that Davis is injury-prone.
Prior to the past two seasons, Davis had more than lived up to his stature as the top overall pick of the 2012 NBA Draft. He played seven NBA seasons before the Lakers acquired him in a blockbuster deal in 2019.
There’s already evidence that Davis’ dedication this offseason is legit, as he has apparently been working out regularly very early in the morning.
The mellow atmosphere that Davis has been conducting his workouts in is in direct contrast to the chaotic atmosphere the Lakers have created by trying to make a blockbuster deal for Kyrie Irving this offseason.
Having a healthy Davis back in the lineup may not require the Lakers to go forward with those trade efforts. Regardless of whether the Lakers succeed or not, Davis is clearly zeroed in on making a comeback this season.